12/10/2016

Signing Off

UB40
1980

UB40 in actually good shock

Although the lasting impression in my mind of UB40 is of the reggae-lite colossus that gave us easy listening classics such as "Red Red Wine", I vaguely knew that they had once been good. Nevertheless I am very pleasantly surprised at just how good. Signing Off is superb.

The songs are excellent, with great tunes and meaningful, politically engaged lyrics. The music is authentically dub (at least to my ears) and doesn't sound dated at all, and there's a good variety of tracks. I knew "Food For Thought" as it was one of the songs I would have recorded off the Top 40 countdowns, and I've always loved the saxophone riff and moody, minor key melody. However, my new favourite song is "King", particularly the harmonies. "Burden Of Shame" is an anguished rail against the iniquities of society. "Signing Off" is a funky echo laden instrumental.

There isn't a poor track on the album and if it isn't an all-time classic (in my view at least), it's certainly a great album to listen to.

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