Album review
God Heart Entertainment-House Of Vinyl
September 12, 2004

Tracking list

  1. Boy Work For Satan
  2. Heavy Like Lead
  3. Bad Company
  4. Mr. Undertaker
  5. Freedom's In The Mind feat. Art Madison / Latin Vocalist Javier Calderon
  6. Guide I
  7. Talk To The Hand feat. Mr. Pick / Daddy V
  8. Reparation feat. Art Madison / Javier Calderon
  9. Keick So
  10. Wait For Me feat. Chillum
  11. Preacher Want The Money
  12. Babylon System
  13. Give Thanks For The Power
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

It's easy for me to recall meeting Turtleman in 1998 in Jamaica. Hence I was surprised when during a visit at Irie Records in Münster, Germany I got a CD put in my hands by the always 'thinking along with you'-shopowner Carlo with the remark: just listen to it and tell me what you think of it. I immediately told I was going to take the CD no matter what, because it would bring memories of a 4 hour trip from Ochi to Negril, where we were welcomed by the Irie Negril crew round Gregory ' Mr. Peck' Foster and Turtleman. The crew had then just made some waves with the release of the label showcase "Reggae Wrap" on which Turtleman was absent, because he already started touring and traveling between the USA and Jamaica. As we were sitting on the porch of Mr. Peck's mother's home, we were offered the spliff Turtleman was smoking, but he was smoking sess so strong, that we told we would probably not experience enough of Negril if we'd accept, being tired of the trip up to Negril and having to drive back to Ochi. We were told then by Mr. Peck that we were probably wise, as Turtleman was smoking the highest grade. How he would proof that himself was still funny, as he went so far out, that his offer to get us all some drinks resulted in him disappearing for hours, and we all together walking down the road to get some drinks ourselves. He turned up again, but couldn't really remember where he went... and then together with Mr. Peck did a couple of wicked freestyles on new riddims showing a preference for latin-influenced riddims. And now suddenly six years later I had the release of Turtleman's second album "Prosperity" on his own label "God Heart Entertainment" out of Los Angeles. Never having encountered his first album "Hurry Hurry" from 1999, this was my first reacquaintance. It's an eclectic album, showcasing old-school dancehall, latin-tinged riddims with appropriate singers vocals, and hip hop influences, showcasing his versatility without lacking direction. Opening with the hip hop flavored "Boy Work For Satan", it's the minimalisticly backed girls-big-up tune after the Irie Negril intro "Heavy Like Lead" showcasing his faster deejaying style, before his mother's warning "Bad Company" proves to be getting hard out of your head after listening it only once. Another convincing hip hop inspired tune "Mr. Undertaker" is followed in the R&B-ish song "Freedom's In The Mind" with beautiful soulful vocals by Art Madison and spanish chatting by Javier Calderon alternating with the slow raps by Turtle Man. More consciousness flows over a real latin riddim in "Guide I", before his (former?) Irie Negril colleagues Gregory 'Mr. Peck' Foster and Verol 'Daddy V' Stevens join him for a take on the same riddim as used for "Heavy Like Lead" the even better "Talk To The Hand". More R&B featuring Art Madison and Javier Caldron in the song about wanting a level playing field "Reparation" that could have done without its guitar solo. "Keick So" is an impressive thanks & praises roots tune in Anthony B's style, followed by the conscious lovers tune "Wait For Me" with excellent soulful vocals by Chillum. The riddim for "Preacher Want The Money" didn't catch me at all, but the lyrics are worth listening. "Babylon System" has a roots riddim under its chanting lyrics, and is followed by a dubbed up riddim backing Turtleman riding the riddim really old school for "Give Thanks For The Power". Very enjoyable album, that will satisfy old school DJ fans and listeners of R&B/hip hop influenced dancehall both, even if you haven't met Turtleman unlike me.