Various artists album review
Premium Stars (The Very Best Of Germaican Records 1999-2004)
Germaican Records
September 20, 2004

Tracking list

  1. It's A Pity - Tanya Stephens - 'Doctor's Darling'
  2. Shining Star - T.O.K. - 'Cure'
  3. If U Man Nah Sow No Seed - Vybz Kartel - 'Messer Banzani'
  4. I'll Always Love You - Sizzla - 'Valentine'
  5. Electric Boogie - Elephant Man - 'Electric Boogie'
  6. Stay Away - Luciano - 'Doctor's Darling'
  7. Gangster Role - Mad Cobra - 'Messer Banzani'
  8. After The Storm - Gentleman - 'Valentine'
  9. The Excitement - Sizzla - 'Geisha'
  10. Miss Gorgeous - Degree - 'Pharaoh'
  11. Party Tonight - Tanya Stephens - 'Typhoon'
  12. Hot Girls - Tolga & Degree - 'Bitch'
  13. Di Bone - Ganjan - 'Arena'
  14. Release - Seeed - 'Cure'
  15. Obstacles (Pionear Refix) - Sizzla - 'Pharaoh'
  16. Rude Bwoy Patrol (St. Lucia Refix) - Ward 21 intr. Ill Inspecta - 'Typhoon'
  17. Lately - Lady Saw - 'Bitch'
  18. Arena - Gentleman / Daddy Rings / Tolga - 'Arena'
  19. Doctor's Darling - Dr. Ring-Ding - 'Doctor's Darling'
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

Vocals : 4/5 Backing : 5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 3/4

May 15th was the date for the Germaican Link Up! 5th Anniversary party of Germaican Records out of Leipzig Germany, home of the worldwide celebrated 'Doctor's Darling'-riddim, and a total of 58 7" releases spread over 12 riddims, featured on the compilations "The Excitement", "Shining Stars", "Shining Stars Vol.2" and the VP Records released "Riddim Driven ~ Doctor's Darling" as well. Now two compilations have been released to commemorate this 5th anniversary as well, and it's no surprise that the 'international' one called "Premium Stars" opens with Tanya Stephens worldwide reggaecharts topping "It's A Pity" on the 'Doctor's Darling'-riddim. Like Luciano's "Stay Away" and Dr.Ring-Ding's "Doctor's Darling" this tune has been anthologized on one or more of the Germaican compilantions above, as is the case with T.O.K.'s "Shining Star" over the 'Cure'-riddim but Capleton's "Baby" has when you're not buying 7"s only been available on the Seeed Maxi-CD of their "Release". 'Messer Banzani', the latest riddim built by Germaican Records' Lanni 'Pionear' Topp, is a ska-inspired midtempo riddim on which the first tunes are showcased on this album, with dancehall ruling Jamaican DJ Vybz Kartel's first take on a Germaican riddim, the rude and slack but foremost brilliant "If U Man Nah Sow No Seed", the second take on this riddim is featuring Jamaican veteran rising back to prominence Cobra spitting his usual badman lyrics in the equally entertaining "Gangster Role". The other riddim to new to have been anthologized yet, but probably to appear on an upcoming "Shining Stars Vol.3" if any, is the 'Valentine'-riddim built by Far East Band drummer Marco Baresi, who had his 'boss' Gentleman voice it for the soothing "After The Storm" that outshines Sizzla's rather excellent "I'll Always Love You" on it. The featured Sizzla, Degree, Tanya Stephens, Tolga, Ganjan, Ward 21 and Lady Saw tunes on the 'Electric Boogie', 'Geisha', 'Pharaoh', 'Typhoon' and 'Arena' riddims have all been released on one of the above mentioned compilations, except for one of the wickedest tracks that remained 7"-only till now, the Gentleman, Daddy Rings & Tolga combination "Arena" that give the riddim its name. This compilation is a wicked introduction (especially when combined with the "German Stars" simultaneously released) to one of the most active and best reggae/dancehall labels outside Jamaica. The only objection one could have is towards the growing number of tracks that have appeared on an artists album and 2 or 3 Germaican compilations now.