Special Skank featuring Neville Staple
Ska Au Go Go (Cleopatra)
by Scott Hefflon
A few sweet moments (many revamped songs by The Specials) and a lot of failed experiments from Neville Staple, the smooth voice we all know from The Specials. Let’s not kid ourselves, The Specials had some dull songs, stuff that was some kinda rude boy gangsta shit that sounded cool at cookouts in the sun, but were pretty useless otherwise (unless you were really baked). But when you’re too stoned to get up and change the station, Steely Dan is acceptable. It’s the downside of the drug, kiddies. There are definitely good party moments on this oddly-mixed CD (decent thumping bass, no mid-range, and tinny high end), and there’s a worldliness to it that comes with time (if you’re lucky), but there’s some real cheese here as well, and that’s hard to swallow coming from a master like Neville. But with “Simmer Down,” “Rude Boy Gone to Jail” and the Bosstones-esque opener “Say It Like It Is,” you can perhaps forgive the thin drums, Smashmouthy “Say What You Mean” and other moments not worthy of someone of Neville’s stature.
(13428 Maxella Ave. #251 Marina Del Rey, CA 90292)