I love how young and hungry Aswad sound on this track. For me it captures
an absolutely great moment in reggae- when the militant sound was
alive and well and West Indian youth in the UK inspired by Bob Marley
and other Jamaican artists were busy creating and banging out their
own original, British working-class reggae.
Starting in the mid 1970s artists like Steel
Pulse, Matumbi, Black Slate, LKJ, Dennis Bovell among many others were
busy translating the by then common Rastafarian and reggae themes of black
nationalism, alienation, displacement, and police harassment within a
specific ‘born in the UK’ colonial context. Recorded as part of the John
Peel Sessions in 1976, “Natural Progression,” contains an absolutely heavy
bass, spacey lead guitar fills, sweet harmonies, and a delightful
staggered stop and go rhythm which adds up to one truly crucial track.