Song of the Week (31)

05.06.2013, 00:02 von Christian Cargnelli

Specials: "(Dawning of a) New Era" (1979)

This was the age of ska - do people still dance their hearts out to the Specials? Well, they definitely should. Acute social comment didn't (and doesn't) hurt either. "New Era" is from their landmark debut album The Specials.

"The band has five white members, from a punkish background, and two black members who started by playing reggae. Their common ground is a return to the catchy ska and bluebeat styles that were so popular with the original mods, back in the sixties, but to this is added a new layer of contemporary energy, as well as some wry, pointed and witty songs by organist Jerry Dammers. Black and white lead singers share the vocals - infectious rhymic backings that veer in mood between a tacky night-club approach and the more sophisticated. By their very existence, The Specials are a triumph for multi-racialism, but they hit the message home." (Robin Denselow, "Something Special in the mode", Guardian, 10 October 1979)