Various artists album review
Universal Message Chapter 2
VP Records - Walboomers Music

Tracking list

  1. Jack Radics - Unchained
  2. Bushman - Fire Pon A Weakheart
  3. Morgan Heritage - Blackman's Paradise
  4. VC - By His Deeds
  5. Sizzla - Heaven & Earth
  6. Capleton - I Will Survive
  7. AJ Brown - All Kinds Of People
  8. Junior Kelly - Dem And Those
  9. Terry Linen - Call On A Friend
  10. Buju Banton - Love In The City
  11. Garnett Silk - Death Go Away
  12. Beres Hammond - All My Tears
  13. Culture - Revolution
  14. Jah Cure - Give It To Dem
  15. AJ Brown - Words Of Wisdom
  16. Capleton - Istyic In The Clouds
  17. Glen Washington - Reserve The Right
  18. Cocoa Tea - Sinners Surrender
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

When VP Records released the first chapter of "Universal Message" in 1999 it was rightly hailed as a great compilation set, and now there's the second installment in the series which even outmatches its predecessor!! "Universal Message Chapter 2" is a truly superb "collection of songs with a message and songs with meanings that reflects the day to day struggle and day to day issues that every one endures through life". The compiler, Joel Chin of VP Records, has not only drawn on a number of popular modern roots hits from recent times, but has also included some unfamiliar although notable tunes. The final result is a well balanced compilation set packed with great conscious reggae music, which keeps you involved from start to finish. Of course, the most eye-catching songs featured on the track listing are those credited to such influential and established conscious artists as the "Royal Family Of Reggae" Morgan Heritage, "The Prophet" Capleton, Buju Banton and reggae vets Beres Hammond, Culture and Cocoa Tea. However, the core reggae fan will also recognise the talents of artists like Junior Kelly, Terry Linen, AJ Brown, Jah Cure and VC. Every single effort presented here has its own merits and maintains a high quality level, which makes it hard to zero-in on any particular track. So, let's point out some of our favourite picks, which definitely include the wicked "Words Of Wisdom" - across a lick of the undisputed rocksteady classic "You Don't Care" by The Techniques - and the superb, Barry O'Hare produced "All Kinds Of People", both delivered by AJ Brown. And also Jah Cure's awesome "Give It To Dem (aka This One's For You)", Capleton's exceptional "I Will Survive", Beres Hammond's moving "All My Tears", VC's wonderful "By His Deeds" - which recently reached number one on the Jamaican radio charts - and Garnett Silk's previously unreleased and uncannily prescient "Death Go Away" are part of our "favourite picks" list.
No need to say that "Universal Message Chapter 2" is first-rate and should get a place in any self-respecting reggae enthusiast's collection!!

Teacher & Mr. T.