Review Revue: Pay It All Back Volume II

On-U Sound is a record label based in England since 1979, focusing on dub music in its many forms – or at least some of its many forms – from Lee Scratch Perry to label founder Adrian Sherwood’s own work.  Compilations have always been a great way for labels to give the world a taste of what they have to offer, and from 1984 to 1996 On-U made good use of this approach with their Pay It All Back series. Judging by the mostly enthusiastic reaction of the KCMU DJs, this strategy seems to have been a smart one. (Some overly enthusiastic soul even seems to have stolen the 20 page book advertised on the cover.)

 “The Lee Scratch Perry track is great. Good compilation of On U stuff. I think we have a couple of these cuts.”

“This is awesome, especially the Perry track!”

“The Far-I stuff is good but on the whole, hardly up to drilling [?] levels.”

“Time to send this down to M.”

“Oh, I don’t know. There doesn’t seem to be enough variety in H.”

“Billy Bonds – really swell.”

“And one to play out.”

“I like the African Head Charge cut – but I like African Head Charge – All in all – I think this is a worthy compilation. Do check it out!”

“Grrreat! Prince Far I & African Head Charge are among my faves so far.”

“Forehead Bros ~ slow Tackhead $$. ART is right though.” [I have no idea what this means or if I’m reading it properly, but Tackhead is an act affiliated with On-U Sound, so I know I’ve got that word right.]

“Totally hot!”

“Lots of stuff really grabbed me, but only Dub Syn. + Singers + Players songs have really hung on.”

“Where’s the 20 page book?”

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