All Over The World
This originally ran in the St. Louis Post Dispatch in 1992.
Their debut release on Columbia Records shows this
classic reggae vocal group in a different light. From the
onset it's obvious the Wailing Souls are going for a broader
audience, as they've injected funk, soul, and even rap into
their roots reggae sound. Although it's a departure from
their usual style, "All Over The World" is an excellent
Since their major-label signing, the Wailing Souls have
changed from three members to two, consisting now of only
singers Winston "Pipe" Matthews and Lloyd "Bread" MacDonald.
Matthews has always sung the majority of lead vocals, so
even with the group's change and different musical styles,
his distinctive voice makes these 10 songs unmistakably that
of the Wailing Souls.
The opening title track is pure funk-pop with no trace
of reggae. This radical move works, though, as the song's a
non-stop killer. From the wicked roots style of the next
one, "Shark Attack," to the hardcore beat of "Get Real" and
"Picky Picky Head" (and even the outstanding version of the
Stones' "Sweet Black Angel"), these tunes show the Wailing
Souls in top form vocally as well as lyrically. The
musicianship is also extremely tight, with bassist "Flabba"
Holt leading the way (and make sure you check out the small,
but excellent, guest "toast," or rap, by the legendary U-Roy
on "You Ain't Leaving").
"All Over The World" is one of the years best releases
and though it may dishearten purists, it should gain the
Wailing Souls legions of new fans. The different, more
commercial sound will hopefully open the door to radio play
and with a push from their record company, this classic
group may finally get the recognition it rightfully
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