Various artists album review
Platinum Reggae Volume Three
Artists Only! Records

Tracking list

  1. Morgan Heritage - Love Of The Common People
  2. Freddie McGregor - Sweet Caroline
  3. Chaka Demus & Pliers - Uprising
  4. Luciano - Black Man King
  5. Sizzla - Thou Shalt Not Kill
  6. Yami Bolo - Conquerer
  7. Willie One Blood with Tony Rebel - Life Is Like A Road
  8. Anthony B - Yard Abroad
  9. Jah Mason - High Grade Man
  10. Jahmali - Oh Jah
  11. Robert Ffrench - Free Love
  12. Gregory Isaacs - Cut About The Rest
  13. Tanto Metro & Devonte - Picture You
  14. Morgan Heritage - Rock N Roll
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

This third installment in the successful "Platinum Reggae" series, issued by "Artists Only!" Records, contains mainly material which was produced by artist/producer Robert Ffrench. Furthermore it features production work from Bobby 'Digital' Dixon and 'Reggae Vibes' productions. Although most contributions come from some of the hottest artists on today's Reggae scene, one can also find Reggae vets Freddie McGregor and Gregory Isaacs on the roll-call.
The set opens with two covers : Morgan Heritage doing a nice rendition of Nicky Thomas' "Love of The Common People" (a smash hit in the summer of 1970) and Freddie McGregor's reworking of Neil Diamond's big tune "Sweet Caroline". Freddie McGregor has the voice to turn any kind of song - ranging from an inspired rasta song to a sweet lovers tune - into, at least, a decent effort. No exception in this case, nevertheless a superfluous effort regarding the many fine original tunes Freddie has delivered in his enduring career. Chaka Demus & Pliers deliver their enjoyable conscious cut, "Uprising", in their well know combination style, which proved very successful in the first half of the nineties. However, it is Luciano who is the first to make a very strong impression with his wicked cultural piece "Black Man King", followed by Sizzla who delivers a truly stirring performance with the excellent, Bobby Digital produced message tune, "Thou Shalt Not Kill". Yami Bolo keeps the quality standard high with "Conquerer", one of the best tunes this classic singer has recorded lately. The combination Willie One Blood and Tony Rebel presents a solid, full sounding tune, which partly incorporates a lyrical and vocal rendition of Tenor Saw's "Lots Of Sign", and a riddim that is built on the bassline of Keith & Tex's classic "Tonight" riddim. Bobo dread Anthony B is in good shape as he delivers an exciting piece with "Yard And Broad". Jah Mason, with a vocal performance reminiscent of the Prophet Capleton, contributes with a solid ganja tune. Then, mature singer Jahmali comes with the next cut to the same riddim Luciano for his cut, delivering another fine roots tune. Robert Ffrench's "Free Love" is a very enjoyable effort, showcasing he's a good producer and singer as well. And also Gregory Isaacs' "Cut About The Rest" - across a revitalized version of Culture's "Two Sevens Clash" riddim - is well worth spinning as it belongs one of his best deliveries in the late nineties. "Picture You" by the hot Dancehall duo Tanto Metro & Devonte is a nice effort, however no killer tune. This designation is reserved for Morgan Heritage's "Rock N Roll", a great tune and a worthy closing of an entertaining compilation set.

Teacher & Mr. T.