An interesting thing has happened since the first Urban Beat Reggae collection was released in 1996: cutting-edge dancehall has stopped taking most of its cues from thug rap and started taking them from smooth R&B. There are some hard beats here, to be sure -- Richie Spice's "Galang Yah Gal" bounces and jitters atop a spare, grunting breakbeat and a wheezy organ sample, and Baby Wayne delivers a similar hardcore performance on "Low Mi Gwaan." But the smoothly soulful "Ladies Man," a combination track featuring Spanner Banner and Sean Paul, is much more typical, as are Richie Spice's swinging "My Love" and a fine new mix of Everton Blender's easy-skanking "Slick Me Slick." There are some weak tracks here -- listeners really didn't need yet another take on Dawn Penn's "You Don't Love Me (No No No)," and it's a little sad to see Everton Blender and Beenie Man issuing a heartfelt condemnation of dancehall vulgarity two tracks after Spanner Banner and Lady Saw finish teaching a master class in slackness -- but on balance this is a perfectly serviceable collection of modern dancehall reggae. Recommended.
Urban Beat Reggae: Dancehall Massive Culture Review
by Rick Anderson
|1||Spanner Banner / Sean Paul||03:13||Amazon|
||Spanner Banner / Lady Saw||03:21||Amazon|
|10||Everton Blender / Beenie Man||03:44||Amazon|
|14||Everton Blender / Tony Rebel||04:45||Amazon|