Artists | Issues | CD Reviews | Interviews | Concert Reviews | DVD/Video Reviews | Book Reviews | Who We Are | Staff | Home
Non-Prog CD Reviews

Neville Staple

Ska Crazy

Review by Gary Hill

Neville Staple is probably best known for his work in The Specials. That, along with the title of the album, will probably cue the listener into expecting ska music here. That is pretty accurate, but this does go into more pure reggae and some other territory. The only thing here that isn’t great is one of the bonus tracks, a remix. Beyond this, it’s an extremely enjoyable release.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 4 at

Track by Track Review
Time Longer than Rope

I love the old time vibe to this number. It’s got a very British sound. It’s a fun tune.

The ska comes into play here. This feels a bit like a cross between Staples old band and Bob Marley. I like it. The weird thing is, the vocal hooks on the chorus almost make me think of Hawkwind.
The Farmyard Connection
Another killer slab of reggae, this one also makes me think of Marley.
Play a Song for Me
The horns and other ska elements make this one land closer Specials territory. It’s a fun one. I really love some of the horn work on this thing.
This bouncy ska tune again feels a lot like The Specials. There is a bit of 1950s vibe to it, too. There is a smooth rock section to this one.
Johnny Too Bad
With an awesome reggae groove, I love this one. I also love the horns on the piece. It’s a standout.
Rude Boy Returns
Bouncy and fun, this is a lot like The Specials really. This is another that has some 50s music in the mix, but there is also some jazz here, too.
Wet Dream
Pretty much pure reggae, this is fun.
Rub Up Push Up
Bouncy and playful, this is a good time. This has a lot of jazz and old fashioned pop music in the mix.
Another tasty reggae number, this has a great groove. .
Roadblock (Dub Mix)
Although I like this redo quite a bit, I think I prefer the original version.
The Farmyard Connection (Dub Mix)
In this dub version this sounds a lot like the previous tune. They work well together.
Play a Song for Me (Dub Mix)
Well, when this one got redone they incorporated a lot of auto-tuned vocal effects. That stinks. That sound is so overdone that it’s now becoming a real pariah. I know reviewers who won’t even listen to music if it has that effect. For my money, it’s enough to make this a “skip immediately” track. I wish he’d left this off, really.
Girl (Dub Mix)
Now, this one is cool. It takes on an almost progressive rock or jazz vibe in this telling.
More CD Reviews
Metal/Prog Metal
Progressive Rock

   Creative Commons License
   This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License.

    © 2024 Music Street Journal                                                                           Site design and programming by Studio Fyra, Inc./