Various artists album review
Riddim Driven ~ Sunlight
VP Records
July 27, 2004

Tracking list

  1. Walking On Sunshine - Calibe feat. Elephant Man
  2. Caribbean Queen - Mr. Easy
  3. Any Man - Mad Cobra
  4. Truly Call My Own - Notch
  5. Regular Girl - Delly Ranks
  6. Bruk Out And Wine - Elephant Man
  7. Only Want To Love You - Nicky B
  8. What Ah Ting - Voicemail
  9. Sexaholic - Kid Kurrupt feat. Flava Unit
  10. Still My Number One - Wayne Marshall
  11. It's Over - Christopher
  12. Can You Dance - Lady Saw
  13. Sensimelia - Notch
  14. Let My Music Play - Red Rat
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

After the release a few months ago of the very fine 'Tiajuana'-riddim Richie D (Martin) of the ever swinging Playhouse Records label is back with another poppy and 'famous tune driven' riddim. This time the riddim is inspired by the 1985 around the world chart busting Katrina & The Waves tune "Walking On Sunshine". The tune "Walking On Sunshine" itself is covered in fine style by Calibe alongside Elephant Man kicking off this release in VP Records Riddim Driven series. The 'Sunlight'-riddim has a poppish soca vibe, simply begging for love songs, and that's what most artists voiced, like singer Mr.Easy leading the way with not a cover of the 1984 Grammy Award winning Billy Ocean song, but a very fine own lovers-tribute to Mr. Easy's very own "Carribean Queen", followed by Mad Cobra, who seems to be on a winning streak, and here he contributes the strong "Any Man". It's a singer taking over then again, Notch does the great "Truly Call My Own", before Delly Ranks DJs about his "Regular Girl" and Elephant Man invites in one of his better tunes lately (being on top alongside Calibe in "Walking On Sunshine" already) to "Bruk Out And Whine". Excellent singer Nicky B contributes a tune that is up to the high standard his releases lately allows us to expect, the fabulous lovers "Only Want To Love You", after which Voice Mail continues with his fine voice singing at times with an almost DJ-like phrasing "What Ah Thing". Dutty Cups' Kid Kurrupt is one of the very few on this riddim to lyrically bend it to the slack yet not real hardcore slack lyrics, with great R&B-style backing vocals by Flava Unit in call it what you wanna call it / she's a "Sexaholic". Wayne 'true true' Marshall does the superb try and understand / that I will always be a man / but you're "Still My Number One". Christopher's "It's Over Now" makes me want to once again speak out the hope that this singer, alongside DaVille, Nicky B, Notch and Voice Mail, may voice riddims continuously, and not slip away from attention as happened to Christopher some two years ago. "Can You Dance" is a fine tune by Lady Saw, but as is always the case with her, she outperforms her singing by a large margin when she switches to DJing. Notch delivers a second tune on the riddim, the very entertaining ganja tune "Sensimilia" using the melody of Culture Club's 1984 signature hit "Karma Chameleon", whether that is a smart move trying to get a dancehall crowd moving (remember white English cockney DJ Dominic's 1987 "Me No Favour Boy George" for Jammy's)? I'm curious whether Red Rat (I don't think so, but it still might be) is himself doing the great backing vocals to the otherwise least convincing tune on this riddim "Let My Music Play". The only real weakness of this set lies in the fact that it only contains 14 tunes, without a clean riddim version, but it's great to see so many singer tunes on such a pleasant catchy riddim with so much crossover potential.