Strictly The Best Vol. 41
VP Records
November 24, 2009

Mr. Vegas - Strictly the Best Vol. 41 Track list
  1. I Am Blessed - Mr. Vegas
  2. Dollar Sign - Vybz Kartel
  3. Mocking Bird - Mavado
  4. Really Like You - Laden
  5. Gimmie Gimmie - Beenie Man
  6. Da Style Deh - Busy Signal
  7. Man A Gallis - Ding Dong
  8. Swing - Elephant Man
  9. Life - G-Whizz
  10. Unfair Officer - Wasp
  11. Just How U Move - Mavado
  12. Something Ah Go Happen - Vybz Kartel
  13. Money - Munga
  14. Hope & Pray - Mavado
  15. Gallis - Mr. Vegas
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Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4
As mentioned in the review of Strictly The Best Vol. 40, this year's singers edition, there's a full dancehall edition again in 2009 as well, even despite a "The Biggest Ragga Dancehall Anthems" release on Greensleeves in the autumn, and this is a very good thing to have happened as more than enough tunes reigning the dancehalls have been released. This compilation opens with (one of those) tunes you couldn't avoid stepping into dancehall and there's no reason to as once more Mr. Vegas showed he is a true hitmaker with the brilliant "I Am Blessed" Livup Records' 'Good Life'-riddim built by Serani, that also backs Gaza's Vybz Kartel delivering his magnificent "Dollar Sign" and even Fire Links' 'Street Team'-riddim, built by one of the other Daseca members (David Harrisingh) closely resembles it, backing Gully's Mavado speaking out against all haters in "Mockingbird". One of just two real singers to make this 2009 dancehall volume of "Strictly The Best" is one of the very best to break through in recent years, Big Ship artist Laden with the very strong lovers tune "Really Like You" for which (of course) Stephen 'Di Genius' McGregor laid the R&B-ish riddim that fits it like a tight glove.

'Di Genius' also laid the frenetic riddim backing "Strictly The Best Vol. 40" and this DJ/dancehall album "Vol. 41", as Busy Signal delivers the outrageous "Da Style Deh" produced by former South Block Crew member Germaine 'Mafia McKoy' Clark who provided this mad percussive African-influenced (also through the backing vocals) riddim. Ding Dong delivers the dancing tune "Man A Gallis" giving Wayne 'Unga' Thompson's 'Gallis'-riddim for his own Notice Productions its name and is joined thematically by Elephant Man who packs his dance-instructions in "Swing" on a very upful Stephen 'Di Genius' McGregor beat. And then the only other singer to appear here, Fams House Music protégé Garland Germaine Rowe a.k.a. G-Whizz contributes the unbelievably impressive "Life" across Linton 'TJ' White's fantastic 'Mood Swing'-riddim before Wasp (who did record a couple of strong tunes in 2002 and than 5 years later in 2007 for Black Chiney) is made a real comeback in 2009 and this "Unfair Officer" about dances being locked off by the police is his strongest tune ever over once more on this compilation an R&B-ish riddim but also once more perfectly executed, this time laid by Dameon Gayle a.k.a. DX-The-Producer.

And then it's back to straight hardcore deejaying, first with Mavado's second appearance, as he delivers the phenomenal anti-goverment complaint "Just To How U Move" over Stephen McGregor's aptly titled 'Government'-riddim, followed by his (former) opponent Vybz Kartel reappearing addressing the same theme in "Something Ah Go Happen" across Fire Links' 'Street Team'-riddim that earlier on this compilation was underpinning Mavado's "Mocking Bird". The Gangsta Ras Munga Honourable returns to fine form with the very strong "Money" across the 'Clearance'-riddim for DJ Frass laid by Gaza's Russian and then this superb 2009 dancehall compilation "Strictly The Best Vol. 41" is brought to a close with 2 big tunes across ZJ Chrome's 'Trippple Bounce'-riddim, laid for his Cr2O3 label by 'Di Genius', first Mavado's strong "Hope & Pray", his third appearance on this set and then the even better "Gallis" by Mr. Vegas delivering his second here. Truly a compilation that you must buy to know what happened in the dancehalls in 2009!