Album review
Royal Son Of Ethiopia

Tracking list

  1. As In The Beginning
  2. Eastern Mountain
  3. In This Time Featuring Luciano
  4. Ripe Leaf
  5. Burn Dem Turf
  6. What Does It Worth ?
  7. A Wah Dat ?
  8. Babylon Homework
  9. Oh Children
  10. Break Free
  11. Mental Chains
  12. True Hearts
  13. A Wah Dat ? Remix
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

Vocals : 3/4 Backing : 4 Production : 3/4 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4/5

Without doubt Sizzla Kalonji is one of the deejays who has managed to break the mould in recent years. Many reggae fans will agree that his albums "Praise Ye Jah" and "Black Woman & Child" are both contemporary classics, while "Kalonji" and "Good Ways" were not far off. His latest set "Royal Son Of Ethiopia" is Sizzla's third album release within one year ! It actually would have been released three or four months after his previous Xterminator album "Kalonji", but Greensleeves Records was more or less forced to postpone the street date to the summer of '99 due to the fact that the Bobby Digital produced "Good Ways" appeared in the record shops.
Although being a prolific artist Sizzla has managed to maintain the high standards of his releases for a long time. But with "Royal Son Of Ethiopia" he delivers a somewhat disappointing album. Of course, the usual ingredients are there but the execution isn't. Lyrically Sizzla is a phenomenon in his own right and, yes, he does reaffirm his status as Reggae's best wordsmith. The riddim tracks - while not quite as diverse as we are used to when it comes to Xterminator productions - are still good. But, to be honest, Sizzla's performance is sometimes below par. On some of the tracks Sizzla appears off key and on others he doesn't manage to ride the riddims so well. Even Sizzla's vocal delivery often sounds coarser and less melodic than usual. But it's Sizzla's unique ability to communicate articulately and passionately that always make him worth listening to, even when he delivers an album wich features only a few real killers. Let's just hope that the speed of his releases - in combination with what looks like the overexposure and exploitation of a hot and thus in demand artist - doesn't mean a decline in his self-created high standards.

More Sizzla reviews :
Burning Up
Black Woman & Child
Praise Ye Jah
Jet Star Reggae Max ~ Sizzla
Kalonji>br> Good Ways

Teacher & Mr. T.