Julian Cope presents Head Heritage

Dr Alimantado
Best Dressed Chicken In Town

Released 1978 on ?
Reviewed by YooDooRite, 13/10/2000ce

A moment of dub reggae perfection. Worth buying just for the sleeveshot of the Doctor striding down a dusty Caribbean mainstreet, the zipper on his shorts undone, hi-fiving a mate of his who appears to carrying a fish supper. Rock’n’roll is a moveable feast people. I think Copey said that once. Turn the sleeve over and you see our hero on the London Underground dancing round an advert for the Jamaican tourist board. The guy\'s taking the piss already and you haven’t even heard the music! Move over Liam, we’re dealing with some serious rock’n’roll attitude here.

As you listen to the album a who’s who of 70s reggae presents itself. Gregory Issacs, Horace Andy and Lee Perry all drift in and out of the Alimantado conscious. The dubs themselves are peerless. With King Tubby and the fore-mentioned Upsetter on mixing duties the Aliman creates a bottom heavy and heavily conscious statement. Sure, his rhymes about buying overpriced flour may dumbfound those not born in Kingston Town circa1950 but there is eloquent beauty in his madness. Familiar rasta themes are covered in tracks like I Shot the Barbar, his anti-baldhead rant, or Gimme Mi Gun, discussing Jamaican gunlaws, but Winston A. transcend the clichés and turns the whole thing into the best punky reggae party ever.

I love this album. As a postscript it recently broke the ice for myself when meeting my girlfriends big brother. I noticed he had it on CD and immediately all awkwardness was banished as we hollered the ‘bestadressedacheeeekeeen’ chorus in his living room. Ride On Mr Aliman!

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