Encore's track list is a mix of new material and covers:
- "Black Skinned Blue-Eyed Boys" [an Equals cover]
- "B.L.M." [Black Lives Matter]
- "Vote For Me"
- "The Lunatics Have Taken Over the Asylum" [a Fun Boy 3 cover]
- "Breaking Point"
- "Blam Blam Fever" [a Valentines' cover AKA "Guns Fever"]
- "10 Commandments" [a Prince Buster cover, featuring Saffiyah Khan]
- "Embarrassed By You"
- "The Life And Times (Of a Man Called Depression)"
- "We Sell Hope"
This iteration of The Specials consists of original members Hall, Lynval Golding, and Horace Panter--joined by more recent collaborators: keyboardist Nikolaj Torp Larsen (who also co-wrote some of these tunes with Hall, Golding, and Panter), Kenrick Rowe on drums, and Ocean Colour Scene guitarist Steve Craddock. Founder, primary songwriter, and keyboardist Jerry Dammers steadfastly has refused to participate in any Specials reunions; guitarist Roddy Radiation and singer Neville Staple were part of many reunion tours, but opted out within the past few years to pursue their own musical projects; and, sadly, drummer John "Brad" Bradbury passed away unexpectedly in 2015.
Specials biographer Paul "Willo" Williams has posted an exclusive, glowing preview of Encore, which he states picks up "where More Specials left off" (so there will be bits of rock, pop, and soul with your 2 Tone); and if "'Ghost Town' was the anthem of 1981, then Encore is the snapshot of the world today--and on a global scale." Expect sharp political and social commentary on racism, sexism, gun violence, mental illness, and more--all of which you can dance to.
Needless to say, expectations are running high for this release (fans have been clamoring for new material ever since the first few reunion tours, which started back in 2008!). Here's really hoping that the band delivers!
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