Various artists album review
Treasure Chest Vol. 1
Charm-Jet Star
23 - 09 - 2001

Tracking list

  1. Mikey Spice - Better Days
  2. Anthony B - Oneness
  3. Bushman - What A Gwan
  4. Jah Mason - Forgive Not Forget
  5. Singing Sweet & Tyrical - 2nd Hand Murderer
  6. Dalton Browne - Reflections
  7. Freddie McGregor - Senseless Killings
  8. Angel - Why
  9. Toots & The Maytals - Prayer Of David
  10. Jah Mason - The Best Things I Can Do
  11. Maroon - Angry Revolution
  12. Yasus Afari & Rayvon - People Crying
  13. Natural Black - Make Them Sure
  14. Bobby Treasure - Horns Of Blessings
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

"Treasure Chest Vol. 1" is an excellent, strictly cultural oriented two riddim set of quality JA material from Bobby Treasure's "Treasure Chest" label, which is based at Fredddie McGregor's Big Ship studio in Kingston, Jamaica. Featured are the extraordinary cultural riddims "Reflections" - built by former Now Generation and Studio One Band member Dalton Browne - and "Horns Of Blessings", both of which are created along classical reggae lines. Although the spiritual sounding "Horns Of Blessings" is a little slow and definitely not the usual kind of rootsy backdrop with its lone trumpet recorded over nyahbinghi drumming, it is magnificent nevertheless. First drops the "Reflections" riddim which features Dalton Browne's weepy guitar accompanied by tinkling piano, layers of atmospheric keyboards and a driving rhythmic beat. The listener is treated to five cuts plus the version, all great efforts with the most outstanding pieces coming from Mikey Spice, Anthony B and Bushman. Vocally and lyrically Mikey Spice shines bright. The singer with the warm baritone truly delivers an impressive effort and thus the uplifting "Better Days" can be regarded as one of his best efforts yet. Also Anthony B fully displays his skills and talent with his awesome fellow unification song "Oneness" and the same goes for Bushman, who adds another great herb anthem to his repertoire.
Then the seven pieces for "Horns Of Blessings" riddim. The outrageous "Senseless Killings" is a moving tune, showing reggae vet Freddie McGregor at his very best. Also newcomer Angel has a notable tune with the deeply evocative "Why". Toots & The Maytals deliver an impressive effort with the beautiful spoken chant "Prayer Of David", while Jah Mason's "The Best Thing I Can Be" and Maroon's "Angry Revolution" are just awesome... real killer tunes! With matching cuts from Yasus Afari & Rayvon and Natural Black all versions for the "Horns Of Blessings" riddim make a vital selection of modern anthems. So, modern roots fans check it out! Ignore at your peril!

Teacher & Mr. T.