Creation Rebel – Dub From Creation

19th February 2024 · 1970s, 1978, Music, Reggae

There’s a film in cinemas right now about a long-forgotten British funk band called Cymande, who disappeared 50 years ago and have decided to reform. Change one or two details – replace 50 with 40 and change funk to dub reggae – and you could be talking about Creation Rebel.

A black British collective from Harlesden, the group were a vital part of the live punk scene, supporting bands like The Clash and The Slits in those early days, and also played as the live backing band for visiting Jamaican toaster Prince Far I.

With their deep dub creations, they were like a UK-based Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry and Crucial Tony, Eskimo Fox, Bigga Morrison and Style Scott went on to find their home as Adrian Sherwood’s house band at On-U Sound from 1978-82.

Like Cymande, they are back – this time as a trio of guitarist Tony, drummer Fox and percussionist Ranking Magoo – and back with Adrian Sherwood for an album of heavyweight dub rhythms matched to politically charged vocals.

It’s called Hostile Environment: an apt description of the UK today, just as it was when they were growing up in it in the ’70s.

This is from their 1978 debut album Dub From Creation – with Dennis Bovell at the conrols – before they went space-age with albums like Starship Africa in the early ’80s, breaking up after six albums following the murder of Prince Far I in Jamaica in 1983.