Q - 9/01, pp.132-34 stars out of 5
- "...The genre's 'Mr.Love'...gets straight to the point...offering persuasive invitations on 'Lonely Girl' and the title track..."
NME (Magazine) - 9/15/01, p.408 out of 10
- "...Arguably the gentle and melancholic singer's most complete album..."
Personnel: Gregory Isaacs (vocals); Deadly Headley, Bobby Ellis (horns); Gladstone Anderson (piano); Winston Wright (organ); Leroy "Horsemouth" Wallace, Sly Dunbar (drums); Dennis Brown, Junior Delgado, Leroy Sibbles (background vocals).
Recording information: Channel One Studio.
Arranger: Gregory Isaacs.
One of the most crucial albums by reggae singing legend Gregory Isaacs, Soon Forward features an all-star lineup that includes the quintessential Sly and Robbie rhythm section as well as Dennis Brown on backing vocals. With all but one track produced by Isaacs himself, the sticky subtleties of instrumental dub resonate with a trance-inducing effect. Known for the pained purity of his vocal tone, Isaacs graces the microphone with every passing phrase. As he covers romantic territory on classic songs such as "Lonely Girl" and "Soon Forward," the Cool Ruler also sets fire to cultural themes on songs such as "Universal Tribulation" and "Black Liberation Struggle." Originally released in 1979, Soon Forward stands casually at the crossroads of roots reggae, dub, and dancehall. While it might not have been widely recognized outside of Jamaica back then, it is the type of album to stand up to the test of time. ~ Robert Gabriel