Album review
Ghetto Dictionary ~ The Mystery
Bounty Killer
VP Records-Walboomers Music
CD / 2LP
16 - 06 - 2002

Tracking list

  1. Ghetto Dictionary
  2. Blood Bath featuring Wayne Marshall
  3. Fed Up (Remix)
  4. Mystery
  5. Outcry
  6. Bakardi Slang Refix featuring Kardinal Offishall
  7. Liberty
  8. Restaurant
  9. 100 Rounds
  10. High Grade Forever
  11. Gunz In The Ghetto featuring Morgan Heritage
  12. We Need A Leader
  13. Eyewater
  14. Petty Thief
  15. Evils Of The Mind featuring Curly Loxx 2 Loxx & A.R.P.
  16. No Other Like Me featuring Anthony Redrose
  17. Party 2 The End Of Time featuring Richie Stephens & Wayne Marshall
  18. Supastarz
  19. Arrow
  20. Pot Of Gold featuring Richie Stephens
  21. Hidden bonus track (Call His Name featuring Richie Stephens)
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

Jamaican deejays Brigadier Jerry and Ranking Joe were the early influences of one Rodney Price a.k.a. Bounty Killer, who made his recording debut in 1990 when he voiced his first single for King Jammy's brother Uncle T and continued to record for Jammy & family until 1995 when he founded his own Priceless label. Right from the start of his recording career Bounty Killer has played a prominent role in reggae dancehall music. Furthermore he has enjoyed some success with releases that geared equally for fans of hip-hop and dancehall often featuring collaborations with artists from the US hip-hop scene, but it was his contribution to No Doubtís huge pop hit "Hey Baby" that has exposed a whole new audience to Bounty Killer and dancehall influenced music. Bounty Killer is so large these days and carries such a deep arsenal of tunes that not one, but two albums have been released by VP Records.
Bounty Killer's long awaited "Ghetto Dictionary" project consists of two separate and distinct albums: "The Art Of War" and "The Mystery". The latter presents Bounty Killer's Poor People's Governor persona, and is undoubtedly compiled with the main intention to elevate Bounty's profile into the musical mainstream, already given a nudge by his appearance on No Doubt's international hit "Hey Baby". While Bounty Killer is often regarded as a serious and intimidating artist, "The Mystery" also shows the lighter side of Rodney Price. This set represents this enigmatic artistís stance on politics, social issues, and everyday life.
The album opens very strong with the Lloyd "John John" James produced "Ghetto Dictionary", delivered over a revitalized version of the classic "Hypocrites" riddim. Next drops the awesome "Sufferah" across Lenky's simple clap hand riddim called "Diwali", at present mashing up the place in Jamaica. The "Fed Up (Remix)" for Sly & Robbie's "Taxi" label is a great track, which is followed by the outstanding title track "The Mystery" with the Poor People's Governor lashing out at Mr. Fool And Mr. Wannabe who try to dis him in front of his gang. Then the roots classic "Outcry", recorded for Richie Stephens' "Pot Of Gold", one of the highlights on this album. "Bakardi Slang Refix" features Canada's top rapper Kardinal Offishall and surely suits the taste of a hip-hop oriented audience. Vibrant dancehall tunes "Liberty" and "Restaurant" are followed by two definite highlights: "100 Rounds(a.k.a. Dem Punk Ya)" and the herb tune High Grade Forever" over Jeremy Harding's wicked "Lightning" riddim. "Gunz In The Ghetto" is prime modern roots reggae presented in combination with Morgan Heritage. After the nice "We Need A Leader" one is treated to the solid "Eyewater", the excellent "Petty Thief" across the "Drifter" riddim and the awesome combination tune "Evils Of Your Mind". Very enjoyable too is "No Other Like Me" - seeing Bounty Killer teaming up with reggae veteran Anthony Redrose - and the same goes for Party 2 The End Of Time", "Superstarz" and the wicked "Arrow". The combination Bounty Killer and Richie Stephens has proven to work well as once again is showcased with "Pot Of Gold" and the hidden bonus track, a reggae gospel tune entitled "Call His Name".
"Ghetto Dictionary ~ The Mystery" contains enough great and powerful stuff to make this set a thriller!!

Teacher & Mr. T.