Riddim Driven ~ 12 Gauge
VP Records
January 9, 2007

Vybz Kartel - 12 Gauge Track list
  1. Easy Now - Nicky B
  2. What Takes Some Idiot - Mr. Easy
  3. How High - Mavado
  4. From Dem Dis - Bounty Killer & Idonia
  5. Badder Than We - Delly Ranks
  6. 12 Gauge - Vybz Kartel
  7. Bullet - Bounty Killer
  8. Amazing - Wayne Marshall
  9. Black Ski Mask - Future Fambo
  10. Lose Control - Delly Ranks & Wayne Wonder
  11. In A De Club - Chino
  12. In Deh - Elephant Man
  13. In A My Jeans - High Octane
  14. 12 Gauge (Version) - Stephen 'The Genius' McGregor
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4
Once again Stephen 'The Genius' McGregor, Freddie McGregor's only 16(!) years old son, who in a controversial row last year left his mentor Scatta, has been associated lately with Delly Ranx' Di Ranx Productions stable mainly, which is no suprise if you check Di Ranx' 'Red Bull & Guinness', 'Red Bull & Guinness ~ The Mixture' and 'Ghetto Whiskey', but besides building and producing some big riddims for his father's Big Ship label, he also hits big for Michael 'Liquid' Brissett's H2O-label (originally a Donovan 'Vendetta' Bennett spin-off) with a riddim that is clearly inspired by and in the same vein as 'Red Bull & Guinness', built in Freddie's Big Ship Studio.

Nicky B's well sung "Easy Now" makes clear what a pity it is that he is shamelessly underrecorded as he is no less impressive than Mr. Easy with his strong "What Takes Some Idiot". Mavado has delivered a couple of tunes that lack the strength his breakthrough tunes had, but with "How High" he is back on track to immense stardom allegedly recorded to dis Beenie Man. Bounty Killer and Idonia team up for the great combination "From Dem Dis", followed by Delly Ranks very nice "Badder Than We" and Vybz Kartel's super badman tune "12 Gauge".

Bounty Killer's solo contribution is THE tune across the riddim as his "Bullet" has become a kind of an Alliance anthem that explodes in your face. Wayne Marshall delivers a more than decent partly vocodered tune about the black man's pride with "Amazing" before Future Fambo - formerly known as Future Troubles - delivers the highly entertaining "Black Ski Mask" and Delly Ranks joins Wayne Wonder then for the great call to a girl to lose herself and "Lose Control".

Stephen McGregor's brother Chino delivers the more than solid "In A De Club" and Elephant Man is once more in fine form on "In Deh" before promising newcomer High Octane a.k.a. I Octane gives us the last vocal selection on this riddim (although some of the 7"s not included here would certainly have fit in both in terms of quality and time available on a CD) showing his full potential with the slack "In A My Jeans". The overwhelming talent of young Stephen McGregor is shown in the "12 Gauge (Version)" that closes another CD promising 2007 to be a very good year in dancehall and reggae.