Ghetto Skyline
Daweh Congo
Goldheart Music
February 25, 2009

Daweh Congo - Ghetto Skyline Track list
  1. Ghetto Skyline
  2. Straight Up Conscious
  3. One Day
  4. God A Bless
  5. Struggle
  6. Steppin
  7. Blue Moon
  8. Live And Be Happy
  9. Daybreak
  10. Ganja Baby
  11. Joy Brings Pain
  12. Refugee
  13. Dubstep
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Essential -Votes: 23-
Very Good -Votes: 6-
Good -Votes: 1-
Average -Votes: 0-
Disappointing -Votes: 0-
A Waste Of Time -Votes: 0-

Total votes : 30
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4/5 Backing : 4/5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 5
Daweh Congo (real name Rohan Graham) first appeared on the scene in the mid-nineties when he recorded his debut single "Breadwinner" for the late great Alton Ellis. However it was with the hitsingles "Study Garvey", "Coconut Chalice" and "No Peace" for Barry O'Hare's X-Rated label that he enjoyed his first successes. His 1997 released astonishing debut album "Militancy" made clear that a major talent had arrived. At that time the album stroke a resonding chord amongst the "new" generation of Rastafari orientated reggae fans, and it made his growing fanbase longing for more releases from a singer who vocally pays tribute to the great Burning Spear. However they had to be very patient, because it turned out that Daweh Congo, for whatever reason, wasn't excactly a high prolific artist. Throughout the next decade he released only four full length vocal albums -- "Human Rights & Justice aka Earth Runnings" (1999), "Guidance" (2000), "Jah Children" (2004), and "Health & Strength" (2005) -- and just a few singles.

And now, after a very long wait, turns up his latest set entitled "Ghetto Skyline", for which he teamed up with Swedish musician/producer Jonahgold. This 13-track album features his previously released singles "Joy Brings Pain", "Steppin"/"Dubstep" and "Ganja Baby" along with 9 brand new pieces. Hearing "Joy Brings Pain" a couple of years after it was released on single, it's again a joy to listen to this wonderful tune... truly one of the standouts on this album. "Steppin" is performed over slow-paced, rock flavoured roots riddim, which incorporates the notable electric guitar playing of ZilverZurf. Daweh Congo's vocal delivery, the decent lyrical content and the haunting backdrop make this solid tune worth of hearing. With "Dubstep", the last track on the album, we are treated to a fine dub version of the vocal track. "Ganja Baby" strongly differs from the version that appeared on single. Originally the mix of the backing track emphasized on the tabla-like percussion, which gave it a strong North Indian feel, but now the song has a more reggae-related backdrop.

Checking out the never before heard new tunes brings us to the excellent album opener and title track "Ghetto Skyline", a song with a typical Daweh Congo vibe that instantly grabs you to never let loose again. It's followed by another great piece, the stirring "Straight Up Conscious", and the matching serious roots tune "One Day"... Awesome to kick off an album in such a way!! And it doesn't stop here... Also "God A Bless" proves to be a real winner and entertaining to hear. It's followed and even outmatched by "Struggle", an outstanding effort underpinned by a dark one-drop riddim driven by a heavy bassline. "Blue Moon" is a solid tune that deals with matters of the heart, while "Live And Be Happy" is a nice little weird track. Next up is "Daybreak", which comes with a completely different, more bluesy vibe. Even after several spins this effort doesn't appeal to us and fails to make a good impression.

With "Ghetto Skyline" Daweh Congo delivers a different albeit very strong collection of tunes, showing he's a unique talent who should have secured himself a place in the forefront of modern roots reggae long time ago. Hopefully this album, which will surely find its way to his many fans, will push him further in that direction.