The Equators were one of the second wave of ska that blossomed in Britain, decades after the ska originators moved on to rock steady and reggae in Jamaica. The bands mentioned above spearheaded the 2 Tone movement, and it is a mystery to me why this band did not achieve the same fame and following. A cynic might speculate that there wasn't enough white to make it into 2 Tone, but more likely the label (Stiff) failed to promote the band. Or this record: I never saw it in a record store.
Too bad, because this is one of the best, if not The Best, record of the 2 Tone era. Led by three Bailey brothers from Birmingham, a first British generation from Jamaican immigrants, the band was really tight and rocking. The two lead-off songs, "Rescue Me" and "Age of 5," are among the strongest, but the instrumental "Rankin' Discipline" absolutely kicks. The album exhibits solid musicianship from beginning to end. It's been grey, cool and wet where I live, for too long, and this music is an antidote for me, as it was thirty years ago when life was gloomy.