Yami Bolo
Ilights Music-Nocturne
June 21 - 2005

Track list
  1. Ecrire Pour feat. Shurik'n and Nuttea
  2. Love Jah Everyday feat. Sugar Minott
  3. Richard Corry feat. Ken Boothe
  4. Buss of Head feat. Dennis Brown
  5. War & Guns feat. Horace Andy
  6. Put Down Your Weapons feat. Capleton
  7. Curly Locks feat. Merciless
  8. Rastafari is Life feat. Ifa
  9. Do Good feat. Josey Wales, Charlie Chaplin & Jack Radics
  10. Jahjah Loving ft. Shalom
  11. Culture Taking Over feat. Johnny Osbourne
  12. True Love feat. Sizzla Kalonji
  13. Puppet Master feat. Jack Radics
  14. Willow Tree feat. Bounty Killer
  15. Run For feat. Lee "Scratch" Perry
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4 Backing : 3 Production : 3 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4
Yami Bolo's "Ministry" sees the roots reggae artist team up alongside 15 guests in an album of collaborations boasting key figures from the reggae world. Veterans such as Dennis Brown, Ken Boothe and Sugar Minott, as well as some of the most popular modern DJ's including Sizzla, Capleton and Bounty Killer, combine with Bolo to provide a wealth of experience and talent.

The album is punctuated by Bolo's Michael Rose-esque (Black Uhuru) wailings which do become tiresome at times; that said, his roots style vocals are pleasant enough, if somewhat unremarkable on the whole. On the other hand a balance is provided by the contributions of the guest artists which bring plenty of variety and cover a range of vocal styles.

Surprisingly it is the tracks with the elder artists which offer the most interest; those with Sizzla and Capleton are noteworthy only due to the fact that they are unfulfilling considering the huge reputation of both DJ's. The album opens with a strong track, "Ecrire Pour", benefiting from the french raps of Shurik'n and Nuttea and in fact the opening four songs of the album are among its best. After this things fall flat with a number of one dimensional tracks including an unimaginative rendition of the classic "Curly Locks". Luckily things pick up a little towards the end thanks to "Willow Tree" and Lee Scratch Perry's characteristically idiosyncratic "Run For". The stand out track by some distance is the combination with Ken Boothe whose smooth, soulful tones blend sweetly with Bolo's to tell of the songs subject "Richard Corry".

Fans of Bolo will doubtless enjoy hearing him alongside some of the greats; however those unfamiliar with him may find it all a little unspectacular and feel that he is upstaged by some of the guests. A solid, varied effort if perhaps lacking in a real cutting edge.