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Know Jah Better
     

Know Jah Better

by Justin Hinds
 
After cutting the excellent Travel With Love album for Nighthawk, which arrived to much acclaim in 1984, Justin Hinds & Dominoes seemed to disappear from view. However, in the early '90s Hinds returned to the studio alone and began recording again, resulting in Know Jah Better. Much had

Overview

After cutting the excellent Travel With Love album for Nighthawk, which arrived to much acclaim in 1984, Justin Hinds & Dominoes seemed to disappear from view. However, in the early '90s Hinds returned to the studio alone and began recording again, resulting in Know Jah Better. Much had changed in the intervening years -- culture was seeping back into the dancehalls, and thus the singer was now willing to stride firmly into these waters. Thus, Know Jah Better was a distinct shift from Travel With Love, which was an unabashed roots album. It's a bit disconcerting at first listen, but the singer had reveled in the shift from ska to rocksteady and then proved even more evocative during the roots age, so the move to the dancehalls really was long overdue. But under the dancehall sheen, many of the songs are rooted in earlier styles. "Almond Tree" boasts doo wop harmonies and a big band-styled sax solo, "No Place Like Home" is a cheery reggae piece, "Want More" and "Happy Go Lucky" are firmly roots-based, "Deep in My Heart" nods toward rocksteady, while "In This Town" resurrects Hinds' ska classic "Higher the Monkey Climbs," albeit with new lyrics and a distinctly new arrangement. As always, Hinds' lyrics remain thoughtful and he touches on a myriad of themes, as if deliberately trying to broaden his horizons to encompass all tastes. Tough, militant numbers, heartfelt sufferer's songs, inspired religious pieces, impassioned love songs, and even "Happy Go Lucky" numbers create a kaleidoscope of moods. But across them all, Hinds' Rastafarian beliefs permeate through, beautifully summed up in the line, "My love for you is second only to Jah." Although deservedly well received, Know Jah Better was not a huge seller, but did provide a springboard for Hinds to launch himself back into public view later in the decade.

Product Details

Release Date:
09/30/1997
Label:
Nighthawk Records
UPC:
0043024031322
catalogNumber:
313

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Justin Hinds   Primary Artist,Vocals,Vocal Harmony
Winston Bowen   Rhythm Guitar
Chunky   Keyboards
Sly Dunbar   Drums
Mike Fletcher   Bass
Dean Fraser   Saxophone,Vocal Harmony
Derrick Lara   Vocal Harmony
Michael Freckles McKenzie   Drums
Carrol McLaughlin   Keyboards
Leebert Morrison   Guitar
Noel "Scully" Simms   Percussion
Handel Tucker   Keyboards
Franklyn Waul   Keyboards

Technical Credits

Justin Hinds   Producer
Junior Edwards   Engineer
Dean Fraser   Arranger
David Rowe   Engineer
Noel "Scully" Simms   Percussion Overdubs
Earl "Chinna" Smith   Guitar Overdubs
Phillip Zaidie   Engineer
Robert Schoenfeld   Executive Producer,Cover Photo

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