Elephant Man – Dance and Sweep

Elephant Man - Dance and Sweep

Elephant Man - Dance and Sweep

This is more like it.

Elephant Man is on a mission to bring the fun back to Dancehall. His latest album is called “Dance and Sweep – Adventures of the Energy God”, and it features a fantastic piece of cartoon cover art that brings back memories of those old Greensleeves album covers (especially the Scientist ones). The album art was by Tony McDermott, the legendary artist that produced much of the album art for the Greensleeves reggae release – including the aforementioned Scientist ones.

This is released on VP records, who actually acquired Greensleeves a while back – so the link between the two is not that surprising.

The cartoon cover protrays Elephant Man as the dancehall superhero who is here to start the party and lead the crowd in dancing. Look closely and you’ll see what looks like Usain Bolt in the background, and even Harry Potter clutching his broom for the Dance and Sweep. There’s a possible Barak Obama in the background as well?

TRACK LISTING

1. The Genesis (The Energy God’s Introduction)
2. How We Do It ft. Bounty Killer
3. Party Up In Here
4. In Jamaica
5. Nuh Linga
6. Dance And Sweep
7. Clear ft. Kardinal Offishall
8. Sweep
9. Wine And Dip
10. Dip Again
11. Swing
12. Step Ova
13. Shake It
14. Let Me Be The Man
15. Life Of The Party Ft. Bounty Killer (Digital Exclusive)

Dancehall fans will be already familiar with some of the tracklisting as recent singles like ‘How We Do It” and “Nuh Linga” are included.

Listen To It
Listen to ‘How We Do It” with Bounty Killer (Mad Collab riddim):

Listen to “Wine & Dip”:

Watch the official video for “Nuh Linga”:

Buy It

Junior Murvin – Muggers In The Street [1984]

Junior Murvin - Muggers In The Street

Junior Murvin - Muggers In The Street [1984]

If by ‘Muggers’ he means ‘Goat’ then Junior Murvin is spot on.

If not, then this album cover certainly doesn’t really match the social statement and warning that Junior Murvin is trying to convey with the title. Still, it’s a photo of a ‘street’, and the word ‘street’ is in the title, so it’s a partial win.

The rest of the album art, from the font to the graphics used is pure 1980s, so it will come as no surprise that this was released in 1984 on Greensleeves.

It was produced by Henry ‘Junjo’ Lawes, who was the king of dancehall riddims in the early 80s, and despite this, it remains a roots album as opposed to a dancehall one. The problem is, it isn’t a great roots album, and whilst we acknowledge that ‘Police and Thieves’ is a classic, there was really no need to do an 80s remake of the track, mix it up a little bit, and call it ‘Muggers In The Street’. Junior Murvin was clearly on autopilot for this record – it’s not all bad though. And the album art has its own charm about it.

Track List:

  • Judas And Jesus
  • Champagne And Wine
  • Jahova’s Children
  • Strikes And Demonstrations
  • Muggers In The Street
  • Stop The Crime
  • Jamaican Girls
  • Hook Line And Sinker
  • Think Twice
  • I’ll Follow You

Listen To It
 
 
Listen to ‘Muggers In The Street’ by Junior Murvin:

Listen to ‘Think Twice’ by Junior Murvin:

Buy It
 
 

Ranking Ann – Something Fishy Going On (1983)

Ranking Ann Something Fishy Going On

Released in 1983 on Ariwa records this was Ranking Ann’s second album (her first album was called “A Slice of English Toast”). The album was produced by Mad Professor and as a result it has bass heavy dub feel to it with plenty of sound effects firing off while Ranking Ann DJs over the top.

It’s a real shame that Ranking Ann didn’t really get the recognition that she deserved as her first two albums are really original DJ offerings. Our love for cartoon reggae album covers is well known, and this one is a classic. The album art is credited to Tony McDermott who was famous for the Greensleeves album covers of the 1980s, in particular the Scientist dub albums. Check it out below.

Track Listing:

  • Something Fishy Going On
  • Call Me Ranking Ann
  • Fifty Ways
  • Stop Romance Inna Dance
  • Hot! Hot! Hot!
  • Hot Dub
  • Dangerous Mc
  • Immigration Plan
  • A Wa Do Men
  • The Man Is Mine

Listen To It
 
 
Listen to ‘Stop Romance Ina Dance’ by Ranking Ann:

Listen to ‘Call Me Ranking Ann’ by Ranking Ann:

Buy It
 
 

Prince Jammy – Prince Jammy Destroys The Invaders [1982]

Prince Jammy - Prince Jammy Destroys The Invaders

This Prince Jammy dub album came out in 1982 on Greensleeves Records and the artwork was created by Tony McDermott.

In the early 1980s, Scientist had a series of dub albums released on Greensleeves that all featured striking cartoon covers showing Scientist defeating space invaders, vampires, or winning the World Cup (covers that will be featured on this blog in due time) – Tony McDermott was the artist behind them all, and on this cover he portrays Prince Jammy iondefending a planet from an invasion of the original computerised Space Invaders.

Musically it’s a great album, with plenty of killer dubs and great sound effects. Well worth picking up.

Track Listing:

  • Conspiracy On Neptune
  • Martian Encounter
  • Saturn Bombardment
  • Attack On Ganymede
  • War In The Asteroid Belt
  • The Great Red Spot
  • Life On Uranus
  • Final Destruction

Listen To It
 
 
Listen to ‘Conspiracy On Neptune’ by Prince Jammy:

Listen to ‘War In The Asteroid Belt’ by Prince Jammy:

Buy It
 
 

Alborosie – Escape From Babylon (2009)

Alborosie - Escape From Babylon (2009)

As we have written elsewhere, we love the classic cartoon-style reggae album covers…….and this has it in spades. The artwork was done by Tony McDermott – who was famous for creating most of the famous cartoon Greensleeves album sleeves (like the Scientist albums) in the 1980s.

Alborosie is an interesting character and has only been on the dancehall scene for a few of years, but basically, he’s a white Italian from Sicily who has grown huge dreads and taken up residence in Kingston Jamaica and has made quite a stir on the music scene.

Fortunately for Alborosie, he’s hugely talented so somehow manages to pull it off. The cover shows a cartoon Alborosie leading a chain of people through a wrecked and dirty city, acting as a modern day ‘Pied Piper’ type of character, leading his people ‘out of babylon’ (and probably not back to Sicily) – except that he’s a white Italian with dreads.

The album is actually very good indeed, full of heavy bass-lines, and intelligent and witty singjay lyrics. Definitely one of the best reggae releases of 2009 – as well as being one of the best dancehall album covers for 2009.

Track Listing:

  • 1. America
  • 2. No Cocaine
  • 3. Mama She Don’t Like You (Ft. I-Eye)
  • 4. Global War
  • 5. Money
  • 6. Irusalem
  • 7. I Can’t Stand It (Ft. Dennis Brown)
  • 8. Real Story
  • 9. Good Woman
  • 10. Dung A Babylon
  • 11. One Sound (Ft. Gramps Morgan)
  • 12. Humbleness
  • 13. Promise Land
  • 14. Mr. President
  • 15. Operation Uppsala
  • 16. Likkle Africa

Buy It
MP3s:

CDs:

Listen To It

Listen to I Rusalem by Alborosie:

Listen to ‘Can’t stand it (feat. Dennis Brown)’ by Alborosie: