Acclaimed Albums – Catch A Fire by Bob Marley & The Wailers

List item: Listen to the 250 greatest albums
Progress: 114/250Title: Catch A Fire
Artist: Bob Marley & the Wailers
Year: 1973
Position: #143

After the shoegaze of My Bloody Valentine, the electro-pop of Daft Punk and the noise pop of The Jesus & Mary Chain it was high time for me to go back to a genre that I know absolutely nothing about: reggae.

On this list of albums there are three albums by Bob Marley & The Wailers and, going in chronological order, they move lower and lower down the list. So, in theory, what I am listening to today should be the best reggae album ever produced. This maps with the reviews that I have seen of this album.

Now this could be my lack of experience with reggae speaking (no, scratch that, this is my lack of reggae experience speaking) but the bass line for most of these sounded exactly the same. Also, it sounded very similar to a lot of other reggae songs that I have absorbed via osmosis over the years. I don’t mind it too much as this was the perfect music for a warm evening in May (again why I am having to post 5 times a week to try and lessen this ridiculous gap).

As with a lot of albums my favourite track on the album was the first one. I don’t know what it was about ‘Concrete Jungle’ that struck me in particular.  Second favourite track would be ‘Baby We’ve Got A Date (Rock It Baby)’ for the reason that whilst it had the same rhythm in the background it felt different because of the guitar line and the heavier use of backing vocals.

To be honest I went into Catch A Fire with a pre-conceived notion of reggae. Having listened to this album I can’t say that a lot of my thoughts have changed, but I have warmed to this genre a bit more. It’s given me a better idea of where ska’s roots are (something that will be fleshed out more by the 1001 Songs list I bet) which is kinda cool. Weird to think that we got from here to No Doubt singing ‘Bathwater’.

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