Three In One (VP Records VPCD 1656, 2003)
After bringing reggae to the punk rock massive with their participation in the Warped tour, Morgan Heritage now offer up their most wide-ranging and best album yet. These offspring of reggae singer Denroy Morgan deliver roots consciousness with just enough touches of pop and dancehall to occasionally lighten the load.
The disc opens with “Jump Around,” a bopping dance tune reminiscent of Third World, before the more serious stuff starts kindling the righteous flame. Potent tracks like “Ah Who Dem,” “Rebel,” “Falling Race” and the acoustic “Anti-War Song (Someone Knows)” speak of religious hypocrisy, government corruption, personal responsibility and other such topics to wrap your mind around, demonstrating the sharpness with which the band have developed not only as singers and players but as insightful cultural observers.
There’s also a rousing ska number (“Everything is Still Everything”), some soulful love songs, spiritual reassurances and more, all tied up in a lengthy package of modern roots reggae rhythms characterized by by solid drums and bass laced with tightly tasty bits of guitar, keyboard and harmonies.
Morgan Heritage are consistently outspoken regarding their commitment to keeping the spirit of reggae pure and heartfelt, and Three In One shows how well they’re keeping the faith.
Buy Three In One
Author: Tom Orr
Tom Orr is a California-based writer whose talent and mental stability are of an equally questionable nature. His hobbies include ignoring trends, striking dramatic poses in front of his ever-tolerant wife and watching helplessly as his kids surpass him in all desirable traits.