June 07, 2004
from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)|
|Vocals : 5||Backing : 5||Production : 5||Sound quality : 5||Sleeve : 4|
Prince Malachi (real name Mark Wynter) instantly attacted attention of reggae connoisseurs when Xterminator producer Phillip "Fatis" Burrell released his awesome debut single "Love Jah" at the beginning of 1998. Very soon the singer, whose vocal style has often been compared to that of Luciano, became well known to international roots reggae fans after recording two albums for Xterminator, actually the same Jamaican production camp from which Luciano and Sizzla emerged in the mid 1990s. The first album, "Love Jah" (aka "Prophet, Priest And King"), came out in 1999 and featured his three hit singles "Love Jah", "Ready Fi Dem" and "Fire It Is Blazing". The second, "Watch Over We", was released in 2000. Before these two albums he had already released an album entitled "Jah Light" on his own Mount Ararat label. The success of these albums spread his name far and wide as the new millennium dawned, which is hardly surprising given his heartfelt vocal style and powerful, lyrical messages. However, since the release of "Watch Over We" we've heard little from this great singer and fine songwriter. After a long wait he's now back on the track with "Runaway Slave", a wonderful brand new album produced by one of the UK's leading production houses, Stingray. Prince Malachi, whose singing is never less than soulful, and his song writing even more incisive and meaningful than ever, benefits from the quality the McLeod brothers bring to their productions. It makes this album a real treat for the fan of modern roots music. Featured are many great tunes like e.g. "Go Ur Way", Canít Control I", "Take Me Home", "Strong Herb" and "Moses Staff", all keeping you involved till the very end. The title track "Runaway Slave" itself is a masterful reality number, and so too the reflective "So Wrong", and then "Guide Me", which he delivers over a murderous riddim once made popular by the Wailing Souls. Besides message and reality tunes Prince Malachi also deals with matters of the heart as is expressed in two solid efforts, "Show Love" and "Rain Or Shine". With "Runaway Slave", Prince Malachi and Stingray have delivered a first-rate album, stamped with quality all over.Teacher & Mr. T.