Sounds,  August 17, 1974

Reviewed by ENO

I searched this pile of records incessantly for some vague hint of reggae, and found MIKE PATTO: "SITTING IN THE PARK" (GOODEAR), which is a well-known oldie by someone - I can’t remember, put to a reggae rhythm section, who digest it fairly well but, I think, with a lack of roughage. I quite like the record, mainly because of the purely mechanicalical effect that reggae rhythms seem to have on my lower abdomen, but I think it is too highly polished to really work on its chosen terms.

 PATTO: a lack of roughage
One of the qualities of interesting reggae (ie, the kind you never hear on the radio), is that it doesn’t fuss around after the conventional technical / musical fineries, and doesn’t attempt to defend itself with craft – by that I mean, it is music where you are conscious of a group of people making one sound (which is a basically tribal situation), as opposed to the Classical Western situation, where one guy gets to be the soloist, and do all the nice bits, while the others support him. The word "support" is accurate – it indicates a hierarchy, and stresses the separation of the soloist from the group. You very rarely hear even a short solo on a reggae record – everyone is ideally, equally important.

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