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Joseph Israel - Gone Are the Days Review

by Morley Seaver

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Joseph Israel, from Arkansas, fell in love with reggae at the age of 14 when he visited Jamaica for the first time. The sound of the island resonated within him and he was hooked. Years later he later hooked up with various local musicians and formed a reggae band. He performed in front of many established bands like Burning Spear and Culture, eventually playing some shows with Ziggy Marley. Marley's band became friends with Israel and that has led to this record.

"Gone Are the Days" is a great release that will please any reggae fan. Israel has a really ear-friendly voice and the material is up with there with most top contemporary reggae releases. Of particular note is "Hotta Fiyah", a hypnotizing track with a beefed up guitar. As compelling is "Ruff Times", an excellent track featuring Luciano. The record actually gets better after the first couple of songs. The first four are standard by-the-book reggae songs but the rest are all elevated in quality (except for the average "Perfect Love") especially the last cut "Universal Love". Yah, mon!


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Joseph Israel - Gone Are the Days

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