Mahogany Road
I Grade Records
July 1, 2006

Abja featuring Niyorah - Mahogany Road Track list
  1. Don't Feel No Way
  2. Consideration
  3. Good Vibez feat. NiyoRah
  4. Mahogany Road
  5. Praise The Day
  6. Good Sensimilia
  7. Dread Time
  8. Preservation Of The I
  9. Long Time
  10. One Shot
  11. Rejoice
  12. Wanted
  13. Danger Zone
  14. Whitewash
  15. Jah Love feat. Ras Attitude
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 3
Abja's tune "Crucial Confessions" (included on I Grade Records' first compilation album, "Weep Not", released in 2002) provided a glimpse of the unique talent of this artist hailing from St. Croix in the Virgin Islands. With "Inna Red I Hour" -- his first full-length release -- he delivered a much promising and powerful collection of tunes, which brought him to the attention of (V.I.) roots followers around the world.

Now here's Abja's long-awaited sophomore CD "Mahogany Road", which not only reaffirms that he's one of the most promising new conscious artists, but this set also fully lives up to expectations raised by Abja's debut album. While listening to Abja's new album it's obvious that he has made a natural progression and thus has taken his musical efforts to the next (higher) level.

The album starts off in great style with "Don't Feel No Way", an awesome piece underpinned by a wonderful, hypnotic backdrop with subtle keyboard layers. Next drops "Consideration", a roots killer, which comes across the same riddim as "Enter" from the Midnite album "Jah Grid'. The combination tune with label-mate NiyoRah, "Good Vibez", has horns and a real funky groove, but unfortunately doesn't match the two previous tracks.

The slow-paced title track is a beautiful song with a great vocal and lyrical delivery... "goose pimples" music! The same goes for "Preservation Of The I", a brilliant effort with great backing vocals! "Good Sensimilia" is a well done tribute to the benefits of ganja and royal meditation, while "Long Time" shows that Abja is also able to deliver a noteworthy song dealing with matters of the heart.

The remaining tracks maintain the quality throughout and are truly worth of hearing. All tunes included on this album benefit from the heavyweight all-live instrumentation provided by the I Grade stable of producers and musicans including Tippy I, Kenyatta, Tuff Lion, T Rock, Astor Campbell and Balboa Becker.

Abja and the I Grade production team have managed to create a well balanced, exciting collection of tunes. So, ignore at your peril!!