Album review
Zion Gates
HeartBeat Europe

Tracking list

  1. Laws Of The King
  2. Give The Youth A Chance (featuring Prince Malachi)
  3. Give Up
  4. Zion's Gate
  5. Fire
  6. Jah House
  7. Living Spiritual
  8. Woo
  9. Stand Firm
  10. Weh Dem Did (featuring Morgan Heritage)
  11. Jah Lead Our Way (featuring Mojo)
  12. See The Enemy
  13. Free As A Bird *
  14. Ghetto Life Song *
  15. All Alone (Thinking 'Bout U) *
    * Denotes CD Bonus Tracks
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

L.M.S. - an acronym for Laza, Miriam, and Shy-Poo Morgan - is another musical group formed by some of Denroy Morgan's children. Morgan Heritage is the other, meanwhile extremely successful reggae group which solely consists of Denroy's offspring. Shy-Poo is the male singer, Miriam the female singer, and Laza the deejay/rapper with the wailing "Sizzla-esque" chanter style. Laza and Shy-Poo started out as The Dredz. The duo released five singles in Jamaica and dub specials for sounds like Stone Love. When L.M.S. and Morgan Heritage made their debut performance at Jamaica's Sunsplash, an MCA scout signed them but the Dredz album was never released. Miriam started out as one of the dancers for the Dredz before joining the duo. In the last years this vocal trio already drew notable attention with some solid 45s for ace producer Donovan Germain. The result of this collaboration was the excellent debut album 'Reality Calling' which fully displayed the trio's musical qualities and the expert production talents of Donovan Germain alongside family members of Morgan Heritage.
The sound of L.M.S. is strongly reminiscent of Morgan Heritage, although their current album "Zion Gates" showcases the group's development to a mature sing-jay lyrical style. The tracks feature dancehall, lovers rock, and hip hop influences. Their ability to flow with each genre comes from their Jamaican and US lineage. Their uplifting messages, blending dancehall and roots music, are backed by fine musicians like Donald Dennis, Dean Fraser, Robbie Shakespeare, Chinna Smith, Sly Dunbar and Robby Lyn. Paired with Philip 'Fattis' Burrell's awesome production style the album is destined to become one of the strongest reggae albums of 2001.
Although it is hardly impossible to point out highlights on this wonderful album, some of the tunes are extremely strong. Give The Youth A Chance is a powerful combination track alongside Prince Malachi, dealing with the youths who must get a chance to learn about Haile Selassie, before adapting the lifestyle of the rasta. The title track Zion Gates expresses a higher level of consciousness and how to attain and maintain that consciousness in everyday life. Living Spiritual tells us that we can't depend on our own understanding, but that we have to rely on a higher power in order to make it through everyday life. Morgan Heritage joins L.M.S. on the boom tune Weh Dem Did Deh. The ballad Ghetto Life Somg is an uplifting message to those living in the ghetto, acknowledging their struggles and oppressions. The album closes with a beautiful love song All Along (Thinking About You). It reaches out to a woman, asking her to stay strong and ignore those who wanna try to tear both lovers apart.
Roots and culture for your dancing feet is what L.M.S. brings to you on their excellent album "Zion Gates".

Teacher & Mr. T.