Welcome to Eternal Thunder, the original web site dedicated to the works of Lee "Scratch" Perry. First launched in 1996, Eternal Thunder is the only Lee Perry fan site to get official approval from the Upsetter. The site includes a discography, biography, podcast and magazine, all with exclusive and upsetting content. Stay red and enjoy your visit.

Check the Black Ark Emperor

Black Ark In Dub VP RecordsAugust 3, 2020 | A dubious dub collection gets a legitimate release.

For decades, shady collections of Lee Perry music have confounded fans with dubious material and misinformation. Originally released in 1980 on the Black Ark International label, Black Ark In Dub featured 10 tracks which are definitely Black Ark recordings, but lack Perry's signature mixing style. Easily dismissed as an attempt by Scratch's then wife Pauline Morrison to make some easy money, the true story behind Black Ark In Dub is sadly much more complicated. A new release from 17 North Parade attempts to set the record straight with insightful sleeve notes from David Katz and the addition of nine rare vocal tracks. While the material remains mysterious and half-baked, Black Ark In Dub provides a fascinating snapshot of the last days of the Black Ark.

Another notable Scratch release is Lee Perry The Black Emperor (Studio 16), which gathers together a dozen crucial Black Ark singles such as "Psalms 20" by James Booms and Max Romeo's "Fire Fe De Vatican". A dub companion is slated for release later in August 2020. Black Emperor comes on the heels of Studio 16's series of Disco Devils collections, a neat five volume set of Black Ark discomixes. Although all of this material has already been included on previous compilations, some of those sets are now out-of-print and date back 25 years, so it's nice to have these new collections in the mix.

 

Play On Mr. Music

Play On Mr. Music LPMay 23, 2020 | Rock A Shaka Records upsets with a new Lee Perry collection.

Ace Japanese reissue label Rock A Shaka have announced a new Lee Perry compilation called Play On Mr. Music, a choice set of Black Ark tracks.

Featuring the long-elusive "Play On Mr. Music" (previously released by Rock A Shaka as a 10" single in 2014), the compilation also features alternate versions of Sam Carty's mysterious "Bird In Hand" AKA "Milte Hi Akhen", "Rejoice Jah Jah Children" by the Silvertones, "History" by Carlton Jackson, and more. The CD version contains two previously unreleased Keith Rowe tracks, "Sugar And Spice" and "Spicy Version". Three 7" singles will also be released at the same time, including "Play On Mr. Music" and the wonderful "People Get Ready" by Junior Murvin. All in all, this looks like an ichiban collection!

Available from Rock A Shaka on LP and CD on June 13, 2020.


Full Experience come again

Full ExperienceFebruary 17, 2020 | More neglected Black Ark recordings are seeing the light of day again.

Full Experience – the female trio of Aura Lewis, Candy McKenzie, and Pamela Reed – recorded an album's worth of material with Lee Perry. McKenzie also cut enough material for an album, but unfortunately both of these projects ended up in the twilight zone. Working with a poor quality tape, Lewis eventually released five Full Experience tracks on the French Blue Moon label in 1990. The McKenzie tracks lay dormant until Trojan released a limited edition LP in 2011. In both cases, it was a shame that such great music never got to be enjoyed by a wider audience.

Doctor Bird records (reborn in 2014 under the wing of UK label Cherry Red) has just announced a comprehensive new release that combines both the Full Experience and Candy McKenzie material on one collection. This upsetting set comes on the heels of their expanded release of Clint Eastwood in 2019 and Cherry Red's re-release of the infamous The Good, The Bad, And The Upsetters in 2014. With Lee Perry re-releases slowing down over the past decade, it's great to see all of this music available again.


Black Ark Nuggets

Back To The ArkDecember 21, 2019 | A You Tube channel is the home of an incredible set of rare Black Ark recordings.

For many years, the most serious Lee Perry fans have been uncovering the rare and often mysterious records that were recorded at the Black Ark by other producers between 1974 and 1978. Finding these records – which usually show no indication of a Lee Perry connection – can be like finding needles in a massive haystack.

Thanks to the efforts of one dedicated Lee Perry fan, the world can appreciate the depth of material recorded at the Black Ark, waiting to be re-discovered in the land of vinyl oblivion. Check out an interview with Jon Lottman, the man behind the incredible Black Ark Nuggets YouTube channel.


Life of the Plants

Back To The ArkOctober 24, 2019 | Scratch is back with a far out project.

Lee Perry has teamed up with American psychedelic pop duo Peaking Lights and producer Ivan Lee for an interesting new EP, Life of the Plants.

Rather than being a dub platter, Life of the Plants is more ambient trip hop, with an enjoyable sound reminscent of Massive Attack, Portishead, or Thievery Corporation. All of the songs are extended mixes, with Scratch merrily rambling; the shortest clocks in at eight minutes.

Read more about the project at Stones Throw Records.


Back to the Ark

Back To The ArkSeptember 28, 2019 | Lee Perry and friends deliver another handsome box set.

Although I have mixed feelings about Record Store Day, it's hard to fault this set of 12" singles from Daniel Boyle's Upsetter records. Back To The Ark is a terrific showcase of vocals and dubs that gathers together the impressive talent of Congo Ashanti Roy, Sylford Walker, Dennis Bovell, Vin Gordon, and – of course – Lee Perry.

Each single includes a vocal track plus dub on the A-side, and the B-sides feature Lee Perry on vocals plus another dub, each mixed by Scratch. Highlights include Danny Red's "World Crisis" and Congo Ashanti Roy's "Ruff It Ruff", both sounding like they could have been vintage Upsetter or Black Art singles from the 1970s (in mood, not in production style). Scratch is his usual playful and eccentric self on the B-sides, but the A-side singers are the real attraction here.

Of course, the set sold out during Record Store Day in April, but many are still available on Discogs or elsewhere. A bit pricey, but a nice collector's set and another cool snapshot of the Upsetter in his twilight years.


Nice new wax

People Funny BoyApril 27, 2019 | Some crucial Scratch tunes are back on vinyl and in a handsome box set.

With the CD format slowly but surely dying, it's nice to see new collector's sets being pressed on vinyl. Trojan has just announced People Funny Boy: The Early Upsetter Singles box set, a nice collection of 10 singles from 1968. Although the choice of tunes isn't particularly inspired (most if not all have been released on previous Trojan collections), the set looks nicely crafted and certainly serious collectors will want to get their hands on this one.

And if you can't afford original Black Art records, Pressure Sounds continue to release some Lee Perry gems on crisp new 7" singles. Their latest platters include "Wolf Out Deh" by Lloyd and Devon, "Better Future" by Errol Walker, and "Voodooism" by Leo Graham. Check their singles back catalog for more Black Ark and early Scratch productions.


Give thanks!

Give ThanksMarch 14, 2019 | Looks like Eternal Thunder is not an eternal blunder.

Thanks to everyone who has provided positive feedback and trouble-shooting tips after the major redevelopment of this site in December. Mistakes have been corrected, and broken links have been fixed.

At the moment, there are no new Lee Perry collections being released, but there is an interesting box set on the way for Record Store Day 2019 featuring new vocal tracks from Scratch and friends on top of vintage Black Ark rhythms. Featuring Dennis Bovell, Congo Ashanti Roy, and Sylford Walker, this set looks upsetting indeed.

March 20 is the Upsetter's 83 birthday, and he shows no signs of slowing down. Long may he rave! If you want to wish Scratch a happy birthday, be sure to connect with him on his lively Facebook page or Twitter.


This is upsetting

Scratch in the yardDecember 1, 2018 | This is...upsetting! Welcome to the new Eternal Thunder.

Okay, okay, let's take it from here... It's strange to think that this web site has been part of my life for more than 20 years now. Eternal Thunder first went online as Soundzs From The Hotline in 1996 – crude in both content and design in the early days of the internet. Over the years, as my knowledge of both Lee Perry's music and web design got better, I faithfully updated Eternal Thunder regularly and added a lot of new content. In 2006, after a long period of inactivity, I pretty much rebuilt every pixel of Eternal Thunder. That foundation is still solid, and so this latest redevelopment is mainly about modernizing the web site's code, along with some new content, improved graphics, and a cleaner look. So what's new in the 2018 Eternal Thunder?

The discography has been brought as up to date as possible, including the most recent Perry collections and 7" singles from Pressure Sounds and Reggae Fever's mighty catalogues. A listing of US and Canadian singles has also been added, something that is long overdue. Also overdue is a search function to hopefully make discography entries easier to find. Some of my favourite singles have been annotated with information and sound samples.

Revisiting the discography was interesting, as we are certainly living in an era of shifting sands when it comes to collecting music. I originally created the Eternal Thunder discography in the 1990s, just as record labels were starting to re-release a lot of Lee Perry's material on CD. At the time, I had no solid information on the hundreds of singles and LPs that were out there in vinyl oblivion, so such a listing never even occurred to me. 20 years later, the CD is moving towards extinction, and – in some cases – certain discs are now almost as rare as records from the 1970s! (A copy of Blood & Fire's Jesus Dread set now sells for anywhere between $80 and $200 on Amazon.)

It seems strange to be nostalgic for the 2000s, but the terrific flood of Lee Perry material from that time has now slowed to a trickle, with Pressure Sounds' series of Scratch collections being the only game in town. As we move into the MP3 future, I'm curious as to how people are going to find, discover and collect Lee Perry's music over the next decade. I'll do my best to keep the discography up to date.

Upsetting Station – the magazine section of Eternal Thunder – has been completely revamped. This is where you can find many in-depth articles on Lee Perry and his music. Over the years, I've been able to solve some mysteries, analyze some of Scratch's best works, delve into some alternate history, and have some fun with the magazine. I've also included some vintage articles from the 1970s that are fascinating to read, since they come from a time when Lee Perry's music was still new. I hope to add more articles to Upsetting Station in the future.

Although I have no plans to produce any new episodes, I'm very proud of the Radio Scratch podcasts. From 2006 - 2009, I produced more than 30 episodes of Radio Scratch that chronicled almost every aspect of Lee Perry's career, from his earliest ska numbers to his deepest Black Ark material and his eccentric modern works.

Finally, my apologies to anyone viewing this site on a mobile device, as it has not been optimized for mobile viewing. Due to the size of the web site and the volume of information contained within, it might very well be another 10 years before I get around to figuring that out! And if you see any broken links or other errors, please

Enjoy the new Eternal Thunder.


The Black Album

The Black AlbumOctober 20, 2018 | Lee Perry and Daniel Boyle join forces again for another excellent album.

For many years, the quality of Lee Perry's recorded output has largely depended on who he's working with. Happily, over the past decade Scratch has managed to find talented collaborators such as Subatomic Sound System, Pura Vida, and the White Belly Rats who have provided a solid foundation for the Upsetter's one-of-a-kind ravings. At the top of this short list of valued collaborators is UK producer Daniel Boyle, whose first album with Perry, Back On The Controls, was a massive success on many fronts. Featuring a deep and sprawling mood, the album featured excellent musicianship guided by Boyle's expertise in the producer's chair. Four years later, Scratch and Boyle are back with The Black Album.

Rather than knock you out like the sprawling and dread vibes of Back On The Controls, Black Album turns things down a notch. Boyle once again assembled a mighty set of session musicians and crucial analogue equipment to create the right vibe for the Upsetter, who muses on outer space, the dangers of eating meat, Kingston rude boys, and black shadows. Scratch is both focused and playful on Black Album, and with some imagination, you could imagine this set as something Perry might have recorded in the early 1980s. The inclusion of dubs for every track is a great bonus, as they nicely extend the vibes of each song and take the mood of Black Album to higher heights.

It's an album that reveals more details with each listen, especially in the crisp and spacious dub tracks. Another high point in Scratch's modern career.


Sell me something good

Bogus Lee PerryDecember 12, 2017 | In Eternal Thunder's discography, you will find a comprehensive listing of all of the dubious and misleading Lee Perry collections that have been around since the 1990s.

These bogus CD releases range from low quality collections of actual Scratch productions to music that has absolutely nothing to do with Lee Perry. Thankfully, over the years most of these titles have faded from sight, but you still see a few of them now and again.

As I work on the redevelopment of Eternal Thunder, I was amazed to discover that bogus Scratch collections are alive and well in the 21st century. I would have thought that bootleggers would have given up this trickery in the MP3 era and found other ways to rip people off, but guess again! Currently Amazon lists more than a dozen digital collections which are mainly strange bootlegs of material from Return of the Super Ape as well as weird sets of music that have no Lee Perry connection. And then there are some very strange and amusing digital releases that are best left in the dark corners of Amazon cyberspace.

Of course, there's a big difference between bootlegs in 1997 and 2017 – now you can listen to these releases before you buy them. Hopefully any discerning Lee Perry fan will check out the audio samples and know that most of this music is available from more legitimate sources or realize that the tunes are not Perry productions.


Soon come

TimeSeptember 18, 2017 | As reported earlier, I've been slowly but surely working on a major overhaul to Eternal Thunder. It's a huge task, and the work can be tedious.

Also, life and other hobbies often have a way of making sitting in front of a computer chopping out HTML code seem a little dull. But, little by little, it is nearing completion!

There have been some notable Lee Perry releases in the past few months, namely the ambitious Super Ape Returns to Conquer and the enjoyable Science, Magic, Logic. Even a casual Google search finds lots of interesting articles about Scratch as he continues to rave in his 80s. Once the new web site is launched, I'll do my best to keep current.

Thanks to everyone who has been tuning into Eternal Thunder for the past 20 years, and thanks for your patience. Soon come, as they say in Jamaica.


Roast fish and new threads

Lee Perry shirtJune 12, 2017 | If you've ever wanted a Lee Perry t-shirt, Hawaiian shirt, or tank top, then your prayers have been answered.

Japanese clothing label Wacko Maria has just released a line of eye-catching clothing featuring Lee Perry imagery, including record labels, logos, and photos of Scratch. The collection is quite extensive, with lots of really cool Upsetter, Justice League, and Black Art records on t-shirts.

However, before you plan on updating your wardrobe, keep in mind that the items range in price from $100 and up, so while you might be the best dressed chicken in town, you won't have much money left over for buying records!

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