Album review
Taking Over
VP Records-Walboomers Music

Tracking list

  1. Thought For Today
  2. Brand New
  3. Somewhere Oh Oh
  4. Taking Over
  5. Fare
  6. Higher Heights
  7. To The Point
  8. Reach
  9. Whirlwind
  10. Profile
  11. Kebra Negas
  12. Naw Shield Corruption
  13. King Taco
  14. Hold Her In My Arms
  15. Streetside Knowledge
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

Since the release of his debut set "Burning Up" in 1995 Sizzla has established himself as one of Jamaica's most prolific contemporary artists. His output of hit 7" singles has been non-stop; many of his efforts can be found on countless compilation sets and with some twelve albums, recorded for the production houses of Phillip "Fatis" Burrell, Bobby "Digital" Dixon, Kariang and his own Kalonji productions this 26 year-old Bobo chanter has delivered an amazing amount of albums in a short period of time. After his emergence on the reggae scene Sizzla managed to maintain the high quality standard of his releases for a long time, however the decline in the artist's self-created high standards was inevitable regarding the speed of his releases and the overexposure of this in demand artist. This and the fact that, over the past year, some of his lyrical preoccupations were interpreted as slackness (which was seen as a further indication that Sizzla is running out of steam) makes one anxious to know if Sizzla is still able to drop a noteworthy album.
After having spinned "Taking Over" several times it's obvious that Sizzla is still more than capable to deliver an album with strong tunes and good performances. However, don't expect the kind of musical backdrops and vocal deliveries as once displayed on great albums like "Black Woman & Child", "Praise Ye Jah", "Kalonji" and "Good Ways". "Taking Over" incorporates a wide range of styles - which varies from hip-hop layered on reggae beats ("Brand New") to modern cultural reggae ("Fare") to hardcore ragga (""To The Point") - with Sizzla utilizing a gruff and sometimes constrained voice in most of the tunes. Lyrically he proves that he's equiped with firepower and that his songwriting skills are still up to par. Best tracks are "Fare", "To The Point", "Reach", "Whirlwind" and the title track "Taking Over".
The musicians and engineers involved include such top-notch names as Sly Dunbar, Earl "Chinna" Smith, Teethimus, Prince Malachi, Firehouse Crew's Donald Dennis, Colin "Bulby" York, Soljie, John John and Steven Stanley. All tracks are produced by Phillip "Fatis" Burrell with the exception of "To The Point", which is produced by Christopher "CJ" James.

Teacher & Mr. T.