It’s been nearly thirty-five years since music pioneers The English beat first formed in Birmingham, England. The English Beat really crossed the musical lines during its career. It mixed pop, raggea and ska for a sound that was unlike anything else taht audiences were hearing at the time. Now, thanks to a partnership between Shout! Factory and Go-Feet Records, a whole new generation will get to experience the music of a band that laid the groundwork for a whole generation.
On Tuesday, July 10th, Shout! Factory and Go-Feet Records will release a five-disc box set featuring a career retrospective of The English Beat. There will also be a single disc compilation released alongside that box, titled, “Keep The Beat: The Very Best of The English Beat.” For those who are perhaps new to The English Beat, this single disc compilation is an excellent introduction to both the legendary band. “Keep The Beat” provides more than just a fleeting glance of The English Beat’s catalogue. It opens with the deeply introspective ‘Mirror in The Bathroom.’ There’s also the seemingly relationship based ‘Twist & Crawl’, and ‘Hands Off…She’s Mine’ just to name a few.
What makes this compliation such an important release is that it comes in an era when it’s next to impossible at times to differentiate acts from one another even within the confines of their own respective genres. It could even be argued that The English Beat set the groundwork for what would eventually become today’s ska. There is also some standard pop and some really great reggae. In the simplest terms, The English Beat is such an important band because, as proven by this compilation, it could so easily cross musical lines without losing its punch. Few, if any, bands can do today what The English beat did in its day.
Fans of The English Beat can pick up this amazing compilation or its companion box set, “The Complete Beat” online at http://www.shoutfactorystore.com or in stores on July 10th. Regardless of either the box set or compilation cd, this is a must for any music lover or music historian. It is a piece of music history that has finally been unearthed for fans of all ages.
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