Feels like some elevator music, but an elevator in a weird fever dream that never really ends, but there is a fun dude dancing in the elevator with you so it’s okay.
More Specials is the second album by English ska band the Specials, released by 2 Tone Records in October 1980. After the success of the band's self-titled debut, band member Jerry Dammers assumed the role as the band's leader and stirred them into expanding their 2 Tone sound into other genres of music, most prominently a lounge music and easy listening style inspired by Muzak. Several band members disagreed with Dammers' vision and brought their own influences to the album, including from northern soul and rockabilly, contributing to an eclectic sound palette. The relations between band members continued to sour into the album's accompanying tour and most of the band departed in 1981. The album features collaborations with the Go-Go's members Belinda Carlisle, Charlotte Caffey, and Jane Wiedlin; Rhoda Dakar from the Bodysnatchers; and Lee Thompson from Madness. The lyrics on the album, as with the band's debut album, are often intensely political. Upon its release, the album alienated some fans, but reached number 5 in the UK Albums Chart, while its singles reached the top 10 of the UK Singles Chart. The album also reached number 98 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. Critics greeted the album with praise, where journalists felt the album marked a bold step for the band. It has been since cited as an influence on the trip hop genre in the 1990s, and has been re-released several times.
Feels like some elevator music, but an elevator in a weird fever dream that never really ends, but there is a fun dude dancing in the elevator with you so it’s okay.
The specials were my first album I got when we starting this adventure before we made the group. And let me tell you I did not need more specials
"guys you are pretty normal, you might wanna change your band name"
Awful, serious ordeal to listen to the whole album.
This album really surprised me. It's different from anything I usually listen to and very different from anything else I've heard from this list but it goes hard. A lot of it has a 50s or 60s vibe but you can tell that it's from the 80s which is very cool to hear in the 2020s. I also like how it goes from being very upbeat and happy to rather dark and morbid by the end of the album. Enjoy Yourself is rather upbeat for the dark theme and it's fantastic. Then Man at C&A has warnings of a nuclear attack but is still energetic. I love the saxophone on Hey, Little Rich Girl because of course I do. Do Nothing features a strange piano part that gives an otherwise upbeat song a minor sound and a TROMBONE SOLO! Pearl's Cafe continues the trend of depressing lyrics with a cheery musical background, this time complete with a cheesy glockenspiel. It almost feels like carnival music (a carnival with people singing "it's all a load of bollocks"). But I would say that Stereotype is when the album really loses its cheerful disguise. I Can't Stand It continues this and International Jet Set ends with a plane crash leading into a much darker version of Enjoy Yourself to close off the album. Favorite songs: Enjoy Yourself; Hey, Little Rich Girl; Pearl's Cafe; Sock It to 'Em, J.B.; I Can't Stand It Least favorite songs: None Strong 8/10
Not 1 star bad but it's maybe a 1.5 for me so will lean on the generous side. Didn't click much at all.
Not my style... but listening nonetheless Suffering through this Don't like Not my style "I can't stand it" is nearly unlistenable. The female harmony is f*cking awful.
This is one of the worst bands I've ever heard. fuuuuuck it just sucks. This is the second album of theirs on this list so far, and neither of them is even worth wiping your arse with, let alone pretending it's "must hear before you die" material. 0/5.
Impossible not to get moving to the Specials.
Meh. Maybe the extended version left a bunch of stuff that didn’t need to be there. Kinda lame. I thought I liked the specials though
звучит хорошо, но немного нудно
The only thing I like about the amount of times ska has been revived is that it has died so many times as well
The styles on this album are a mish-mash of bleh. A lot of it has a ska feel, which has never been my favorite, and the rest was unappealing enough to make me almost turn it off. I finished it, and I like it slightly better than the Elvis album, but not enough to give it a 2-star rating.
Didn't enjoy. The music superficial; out of step with the lyrics (social change)
Never listened to this is full. Pretty solid all round album with some real classics in the mix
Super fun ska.
This was a favourite of my teenage years, as were all Specials albums. And I still love them
Why has it taken me over 40 years to hear this gem? About half of the 21st century's music is influenced by this album. It's of its time, yet harkens strongly to the future. I thought Ghost Town was an outlier, but you can hear them building up to it. It's taken me nearly 50 years to realise what I need in an album - variety, but with an overarching connection. So many albums become boring, I'm thinking of famous ones like Exile On Main Street, and almost every electronic album. Then we have some that vary too much - psychedelic music springs to mind. This is why classic bands like Queen, Beatles, Led Zep, were able to release so many great albums: they instantly sound recognisable, but provide a dish of varied ingredients. Dammers nearly went too far - International Jet Set, but this is a great, skilful, sometimes funny, almost apocalyptic joy.
curto o som deles
RIP Terry Hall.
Liked this way better than the debut.
Love the Specials. Very sad when Terry hall died last year, massive talent. Didn't know this album, but knew a few tracks. Looks like I missed a few classics. Only complaint is that it was too short. Great lyrics and sounds, added to collection.
On paper, this seemed like the kind of thing I wouldn't like at all but I took their advice from the first track and enjoyed myself throughout. Some impressive horns and saxophone and rockabilly guitar here and there highlight a fun variety of styles. It made me happy.
I wasn't quite sure about this at first, but as I kept listening, it got more and more fun. There are so many ingredients in this recipe! Ska-punk-mariachi-lounge organ-music hall with themes of nuclear war, James Bond films, emotional alienation, and maybe plane crashes?
stupendous, 5 stars.
There's never a time where the specials can't be played
Soundtrack to my youth. The beginning of Thatcher's disaffected, unemployed and miserable Britain mixed with cold war paranoia and all wrapped up in a perfect ska-pop soundtrack. And Terry Hall. What's not to like? Pretty much perfect archive of the era.
What a band what an album cant be mess3d with
An all-time classic. Very inventive, brave and absolutely of its time, yet also timeless.
Love it. Such a sound, such a band. and thanks to Grace's review I learnt that the cover image was taken in the Regent's Hotel in Leamington Spa :)
LOVE the specials love that they're from Coventry, love the album cover (photo from Leamington Spa), love the lyrics and themes, love the reggae sections, love the jazz sections, love the vocals, love the up-beat dance vibes, love the messages, love the power of music overall!
Super cool! I really liked it - what a versatile band! It felt like the band had a blast making this music & that makes the music itself so much more fun.
The transition from ska revivalists to something a little more meaningful runs throughout More Specials. This isn't the sound of a pastiche tribute; it's the sound of The Specials. They deserve their own genre. Enjoy Yourself sums up the entire album, both in spirit and sound. It's tremendous fun. The gang mentality comes across on each track, even though they were about to fall apart. It's a time capsule for the in-between period of post-punk and pre-80's pop. Do Nothing is just perfect.
One of the greatest albums ever made. And the reason no Specials 'reunion' without Dammers was ever going to be anything more than a heritage tribute act. The musical sophistication and progression from the first album is impressive. Great arrangements, insightful lyrics and a fair dash of lighter touches too, even if they are somewhat sardonic. No treading water for this band. The songs flow seamlessly but are not one-dimensional. The adoption of easy listening stylings was way ahead of its time, and songs like Stereotype seem both of their time and timeless. An absolute classic.
One of my favourite albums ever, quite a bit better and more varied than their debut (also 5-star) for a big part due to Jerry Dammers, but song contributions of other band members are also great. Favourite song: the 7.5 minute extended version of Stereotypes.
Great album, lots of great groovy tracks. Standout Tracks: Man at C&A, Hey Little Rich Girl, Stereotype / Stereotype Pt. 2, I Can't Stand It, International Jet Set
It's very catchy!
This was a fun listen. I liked it a lot.
Lovely. Love steady rock steady be steady.
Wild time. Album was all over the place and just a lot of fun. Favorite tracks: “Man at C&A” and “Sock It To ‘Em”
No le encontré mucho lo especial (*duh*), pero es un disco chistosón hasta cierto punto. De repente hay sonidos que se lucen, pero sobre todo lo sentí así, ligero, entretenido. Como música para no tomarse en serio, pero hecha por gente que sabe de música. Al principio pensé que iba a ser todo con vibras un poco de reggae, pero luego se fue diluyendo. Me divirtieron "Stereotype/Stereotype, Pt. 2" y "International Jet Set". Le doy 7.5/10.
Good refresher and enjoyable Ska.
Hey, you are using my project.
Diverse album, with just a solid set of tracks. Very fun, and I could see it growing on me for sure.
Not quite up to the standard of the debut album, but a good album nonetheless. Diluted a little by the variety of styles but still an enjoyable listen.
Really interesting. The first few tracks I thought really sounded muddy and like they were recorded in a garage or something. The later tracks seemed better. Not sure I love it, but it wasn't bad overall.
four star album! fun poppy rasta
Love it. Funky dancehall and ska that’s aged perfectly
I've heard of the Specials before but hadn't ever actually listened in. I really dig this. Before listening I was thinking they were Reggae and was surprised but not surprised to find out that it was Ska! I know of the roots of Ska but had never done my homework enough to actually listen in. Very much helped me place other Reggae inspired bands like the Slits in the London scene. So many jams on this record with a fun spectrum of influences. I look forward to tuning into their first album. All are good but top tracks go to Hey Little Rich Girl, Stereotype, and Sock it to 'em JB. Only last note is that I'd like to do more research on the politics of the lyrics!
Almost done with the album. This was just a fun listen. It's a bit trippy but I like it. I'll rate either a 3 or 4.
Ska Klassiker und fast schon genre begründend.
genuinely was enjoying! lol
The Specials- More Specials (1980): 7/10 Starts off on a bouncy ska sorta tone and continues to fuse many different genres throughout the album, utilizing many different instruments. Really weird, but in a good way. Probably not something I’d listen to in my spare time, but definitely a fun and interesting one time listen.
Good vibes. Almost reggae pop?
First forray into ska music. Interesting and not bad.
Like Belle & Sebastian if they weren’t the whitest band in the world
Yeah really enjoyable 3.9
The Specials are so fun, I love their sound. I hear lots of what inspired Gorillaz phase 1 in this one.
Super ska album met onbekende nummers voor mij
Some fantasic songs. Some throwaways. I feel like I've lost the grasp of my own scoring system....
I enjoyed it more than I thought I would its a really good album with some ace tracks, some fade a bit into the background which is why its not 5
Enjoyed this, not the right weather or time of year for casual ska but still a great album
I don't know if The Specials had as much to say on this album as they did on their debut. But it opens with one of my favourite songs about death - Enjoy Yourself so that's a start. Man in C&A is a much dubbier song than anything they did before, and Hey, Little Rich Girl feels like a much poppier update to Too Much, Too Young (nowhere near as good, but TMTY is near perfect). Do Nothing is class. Where the first album was urgent, this feels much more resigned. The play between the cheery ska and the defeatism of a lot of the lyrics is divine. Pearl's Cafe starts like a week track, but a cheeky refrain halfway through makes it work! It then has a possibly pointless, but spot on and joyful James Brown tribute - I AM NEVER SAYING NO TO THIS! Then they just start listing James Bond films. The back end of the album is very genre agnostic. There's easy listening, dub, pop, and a Casio version of the opener. It's a very good album, but not the terrifying propulsion of the first. It's still the Specials, but you can see that Specials AKA and Fun Boy 3 are on the horizon, sadly.
4.5/5. Shit had variety and energy, I like
Pretty good. Difficult to make ska music which ages well in my opinion, this album is probably as good as it gets.
Enjoyable album but not a genre I’m very familiar with.
The Specials are surely one of the best ska bands to grace the planet. That being said this is a very good album. Not 5 stars but if you like ska you will almost certainly like this.
God, The Specials are great! I only heard their debut in full for the first time last year but was blown away. I don't think this quite lives up to its heights, but the opening song kicks things off with so much energy, and the wider range of instrumentation with some more ambitious songwriting (Stereotype, namely) is a really nice contrast to the more direct debut. Also the song where they just list off a load of James Bond titles was bizarre but a lot of fun
I enjoyed this more than I thought I would. Good early ska sound. Maybe I’m a Specials fan?
Really enjoyed having the Specials come up (again) - such unique sound, commentary of the era and taking in their unique musical talent. Very specials.
The hint of ska at in the first 30 seconds made me want to immediately hate the entire thing but I couldn't bring myself to keep it up. Very sonically pleasing.
This was fun. It dropped off in the second half, but I enjoyed it.
Ça part fort. On est tout de suite dans la fête. Le Groove de Man at C&A est contagieux. On a un bon enchaînement avec les 4 premières chansons. Par contre, la voix sur Pearl's Cafe est moins intéressante, mais la chanson n'est pas si mauvaise. J'aime la guitare sur la grosse distorsion en background. La face A se termine avec Sock It to 'Em J.B où j'aime particulièrement le son du drum. L'expérience jusqu'à maintenant est vraiment agréable. La face B est un peu plus exigeante, mais pas nécessairement mauvaise. J'aime bien le petit beat d'orgue sur Stereotype mais la pièce devient redondante. Je n'ai rien contre les pièces longues, mais faut qu'il y ait une certaine construction intéressante. Holiday Fortnight est la pièce que j'aime le moins. I Can't Stand it serait bien sans les voix. J'aime la basse sur International Jet Set. Peut-être la plus expérimentale du disque. Bref, un album inégale dans un tout, mais je vais sûrement y revenir. J'aime beaucoup le style du groupe.
surprisingly good genre bending new wave-ish. Like if Talking Heads were a ska band that also enjoyed doing spots for kids television
That was an unexpected joy to listen to. It had nice hints of 80s weirdness + proto-ska
En la universidad tuve mis tres semanas de querer oír mucho ska “del viejito” y fue que descubrí a The Specials, pero con las descargas de torrents tenía canciones sueltas de varios discos y ya nunca me aventé a buscarlo completo y oírlo, así que está fue buena experiencia. Creo que lo ma más destaca es que no suena monótono. Incluso en la versión extendida que trae casi el doble de rolas, la variación entre ellas es tanta, que nunca suenan dos igualitas al hilo. Y mira que eso es muy difícil lograr con las limitaciones del ska. Quizá parecerá mucho la cuarta estrella pero en verdad disfruté el disco y hasta se queda en mi colección.
Rating: 7/10 Best songs: Stereotype
7/10. I liked that all the songs sounded different, but they were definitely better at some styles of music than others.
Much better than I was expecting. I am not super familiar with the 2 Tone ska revival from the 1970s and have kind of been dismissive of ska in general, but this is a lot more eclectic and enjoyable than I was expecting. Will check out more from The Specials.
I really liked this. The cover of 'Enjoy Yourself' is a great version of a classic happysad song (the same sentiment as 'Do You Realize??'). It sets the tone of the album, which is eclectic in style and theme, but always fun and bouncy regardless of the seriousness of the lyric. Rating: 3.5/5 Playlist track: Enjoy Yourself (It's Later Than You Think) Date listened: 17/08/22
Ska. Me ha gustado. Un 4.
Surprised by how much I enjoyed this as I don't usually seek out ska or similar. Very interesting album that feels like it changes with every song. I'll deffo give this another listen! Saved tracks: Man at C&A, Stereotype/Stereotype, Pt.2, Holiday Fortnight, I Can't Stand It, International Jet Set
I love this album, The Specials and ska in general. I don't think it is as good as their first album which is hard to beat.
Somebody wants me to be happy! Somebody wants me to dance! And probably get high but no worries, Specials, your brand of upbeat island partytime fun is the only foreign substance I need!
Great album, not quite like the debut, but close
Bouncy ska fun. Turns out I only know two Specials songs, and neither is in this album. But it’s still a good listen.
genre defining album