Various artists album review
Riddim Driven ~ Chrome
VP Records-Walboomers Music
CD / 2LP
March 30, 2004

Tracking list

  1. In Her Heart - Capleton
  2. Don't Hate The Game - Beenie Man
  3. At The Top - Lady Shaw
  4. Little Lady - Vybz Kartel
  5. It Good - Elephant Man
  6. A Wochi Wa - Lexxus
  7. No Noise Please - Hawkeye
  8. Nah Force Ya - Pickney
  9. Train To Life - Frisco Kid
  10. Your Fine - Anthony Cruz
  11. That's OK - Sizzla
  12. Get Me Mad - Bounty Killer
  13. Fat Till It Swell - Alozade
  14. Dis Gal Ya - Tanya Stephens
  15. We Roll - Bling Dawg (& Clean 'Chrome'-riddim version)
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

The 'Chrome'-riddim is the one featured on this volume of VP Records' Riddim Driven series, produced by DJ turned producer as well Michael 'Alozade' Sterling, aided by riddim builders 'Computer' Paul Henton, Craig Serami 'Daseca' Marsh, Ernesto 'DJ X' Mitchell, Carlton Hugh 'Renegade X' Williams and last but not least Daniel 'Blaxxx' Lewis, whose own hot 'Black Out'-riddim is reviewed this week as well. This hardcore riddim with an irresistable, and hard to get out of your head synth riff over its rolling drums will be known to most as the riddim backing the track kicking off this album "In Her Heart" by Capleton. A great track by the Fireman that is immediately followed by another killer: Beenie Man's "Don't Hate The Game" and Lady Saw who is in fine shape on "At The Top", where she does same great bragging, cause her name is at the top / for everyone to see. Vybz Kartel contributes "Little Lady", a nice tune, not as strong as his two tunes on the earlier mentioned 'Black Out'-riddim, but above par as well. "It Good" is full fling slackness by Elephant Man, before Lexxus kicks in with "A Whochi Wa" sounding like a Ward 21 tune explaining she wants a farmer by far. Hawkeye proves he might not release as many tunes he did a couple of years ago, but when he does voice a tune like "No Noise Please", it's still worth hearing. I don't like Pickney's voice, as mentioned in my review of the 'Flava'-riddim, and thinks it's a pity his rapsy, high pitched "Nah Force Yah" is on an otherwise excellent alternate mix of the riddim. Frisco Kid is featured on a more dubby mix of the riddim to deliver "Train To Life", a fine conscious tune. Fifth Element Crew member Anthony Cruz' "Your Fine" is a great soulful take on the riddim for all the ladies. The oriental mood added to the mix for Sizzla's "That's OK" works out more than OK, even when Sizzla seems terribly out of tune in some parts of the tune. Bounty Killer in "Get Me Mad" shows how to ride a riddim, this time featuring an added very high synth pattern, punctuating his vexation. Producer Alozade himself delivers the catchy "Fat Till It Swell". Tanya Stephens is in even better shape than Lady Saw, telling the guys (It takes a real man wi di class and di style fi wuk) "Dis Gal Yah". Bling Dawg finishes the album in fine style with "We Roll" before the clean version (not mentioned on the sleeve and in the notes) really closes the album (the 2LP version - unfortunately for me as a non-vinyl buyer - has an additional 4 tracks) showcasing the synth riff you won't be able to get out of your head for days.