Title - 'For The Many'
Artist - UB40
For those not in the know, UB40 are an English reggae and pop band, formed in December 1978 in Birmingham, England.
The band has had more than 50 singles in the UK Singles Chart, and has also achieved considerable international success.
They have been nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album four times, and in 1984 were nominated for the Brit Award for Best British Group. Indeed, UB40 have sold over 70 million records worldwide.
The ethnic make-up of the band's original line-up was diverse, with musicians of English, Welsh, Irish, Jamaican, Scottish and Yemeni parentage.
Their hit singles include their debut "Food for Thought" and two Billboard Hot 100 number ones with "Red Red Wine" and "Can't Help Falling in Love".
Both of these also topped the UK Singles Chart, as did the band's version of "I Got You Babe".
Their two most successful albums, Labour of Love (1983) and Promises and Lies (1993), reached number one on the UK Albums Chart.
UB40 and the English ska band Madness hold the record for most weeks spent by a group in the UK singles chart during the 1980s, with 214 weeks each.
The band's line-up was stable for nearly 29 years, from March 1979 until January 2008, when front man Ali Campbell left the band, followed shortly thereafter by keyboardist Mickey Virtue.
Another member, Astro, remained with the band until November 2013, when he departed the original band to team up with Campbell and Virtue in a new version of UB40.
In 2014, legal advice was sought by the original band (now consisting of remaining co-founding members drummer Jimmy Brown, guitarist Robin Campbell, bassist Earl Falconer, percussionist Norman Hassan, and saxophonist Brian Travers, along with new vocalist Duncan Campbell) who took action against the group containing Campbell, Virtue, and Astro over usage of the band name, due to its being used by both parties.
For The Many is the Birmingham reggae veterans' nineteenth studio album - their first since 2013's Getting Over The Storm - and is the latter of the two UB40's mentioned above re: Campbell (co-vocals/Guitar), Travers (saxophone/keyboards), Brown (drums), Falconer (bass/keyboards/vocals), Hassan (percussion/vocals) and Campbell (vocals), Meredith (saxophone), Parry (trumpet) and Mullings (keyboards).
It also includes guest appearances from Birmingham rapper Gilly G, who features on the video for "Moonlight Lover" and Jamaican artist/producer Kabaka Pyramid on "Broken Man".
Furthermore, UB40 are reunited with reggae deejays/artists Pablo Rider on "I'm Alright Jack" and Slinger on "Gravy Train", both of whom appeared on the band's 1985 album Baggariddim.
1. "The Keeper"
2. "Broken Man"
3. "Gravy Train"
4. "I'm Alright Jack"
5. "Moonlight Lover"
6. "You Haven't Called"
7. "What Happened To UB40?"
9. "Poor Fool"
10. "All We Do Is Cry"
On a heavy-delayed album - due initially to the situation with HMV, who are one of the major outlets in the UK for their physical product and then with Pledge Music in turmoil (and with uncertainty regarding their financial situation) - UB40 couldn't wait any longer to get their new music out to their fans.
And rightly so as For The Many is not only aptly titled, but a glorious return to form for them. Indeed, once both "The Keeper" and the lush, super smooth "Broken Man" have drawn you into their delicious reggae mood, the fun pop-roll bounce of "Gravy Train" is lovingly upon us.
The lo-fi gentle hipsway of "I'm Alright Jack" is delightful to sit back and close your eyes to and is backed the lover's rock vibe of "Moonlight Lover."
Next up is more of their smooth pop-roll on the stunning musicianship of "You Haven't Called," with the tongue in cheek "What Happened To UB40?" following it.
That's backed seamlessly by both the full on, loud and proud "Bulldozer" and the lesser-edged "Poor Fool." The album then rounds out with the euphoric, school choir enhanced, Hunterz-sung "All We Do Is Cry."
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