The legendary UK roots reggae band Capital Letters is happy to announce the reissue of their 1982 album Vinyard, available May 25, 2015 on Greensleeves Records. The deluxe reissue features new artwork with extensive liner notes as well as seven previously unreleased bonus tracks.
Vinyard is the follow up album to their 1979 debut album Headline News and captures the sound of the golden age of UK reggae. In anticipation of the release, the band has reunited and is currently rehearsing for shows to support the album release in the UK.
There are only ten tracks on Vinyard, but every one of them counts. On "Bagga Wolf" they accuse politicians of "robbing from the poor and giving to the rich" and then indulge in wry humor by opening "No Jobs" with a snippet from the "Funeral March." This song continues where "Unemployment," from their debut album, left off and it cuts across all racial divides. Black-on-black violence is the subject of songs like "Murdering Style" and "How Far." The band then ask why people have to "fuss and fight over Jahoviah" on "Africa Bound," as they pinpoint another source of division within the black community. This insistence on speaking the truth has long been a major hallmark of their work. "Fi Wi Parents," which is one of the strongest tracks on Vinyard, even chastises certain older folks for putting money before spiritual or political concerns, instead of leading the youths by example.
As far as the seven bonus tracks, four of them are previously unreleased outtakes from their debut album Headline News and the remaining three are from a live studio session with the influential BBC Radio One John Peel recorded on January 16th 1979. The mesmeric songs resulting from that session are the standout track "Smokin' My Ganja" and "Fire" (both off Headline News) as well as the never-before-released "Rasta Seh."
Outside of the Caribbean, England was one of the first places to embrace roots reggae in the early 1970s when acts like Bob Marley and Burning Spear were leading the pack. Wolverhampton's Capital Letters were among the wave of talented reggae bands to emerge from Britain during the mid to late seventies that absorbed the sounds of Jamaica and created their own unique strain of roots reggae music that articulated the black British experience like never before. A majority of them had Caribbean parents, or had spent part of their childhood there before moving to Britain. Their music was grounded in honesty, which is why their songs remain so relevant almost forty years later. The had a successful run with their breakthrough single "Smoking My Ganja" and signed a deal with Greensleeves Records shortly after to release several albums.
- Muss Muss
- Murdering Style
- No Jobs
- How Far
- Old Old Owl
- Africa Bound
- Fi Wi Parents
- Oh Politician
- What Would You Do
- Fall In Love Forever
- How Far Can A Man Run
- Rasta Seh (BBC John Peel Session)
- Fire (BBC John Peel Session)
- Smoking My Ganja (BBC John Peel Session)