Various artists album review
Shining Stars Vol. 2
December 01, 2003
from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)|
|Vocals : 5||Backing : 5||Production : 5||Sound quality : 5||Sleeve : 4/5|
After the succes of "Shining Stars Vol. 1 - Four Riddims That Run Germaica in 2002" and we might add, that ran the world in 2003, an album reviewed in January 2003 here, it seems only normal that Germaican Records releases a second volume, especially now that one of the riddims on the first volume (indeed, "Doctor's Darling") will shortly be featured on a one riddim album. Where the first volume put together riddims from different German crews, not only Seeed's "Doctor's Darling" and Pionear's fabulous "Cure" for Germaican Records, but Ingo Rheinbay's great "Celebrate" for his own Pow Pow Productions and Beat Schmieda's very fine "Elemental" as well, "Shining Stars Vol. 2 - Four Riddims That Run Germaica in 2003" (and who knows, the world again in 2004?) is able to concentrate solely on Germaican Records' releases (as did the entertaining compilation concentrating on earlier riddims of 2000 till 2002 "The Excitement", reviewed here as well). And in my opinion more than justified. Four great riddims are featured on this release, starting wih Pionear's stuttering riddim refix of Seeed's middle-eastern influenced phat digital beat "Pharaoh" for Sizzla's "Obstacles", like all other "Pharaoh" 7"s reviewed earlier here, and this indeed is just one of four great licks of the riddim featured here. Tanya Stephens' "Lock Down is a killer included already on Seeed's "Music Monks - EP", as is General Degree's "Miss Gorgeous" that was featured as a bonustrack on Seeed's "Music Monks". A big political statement on the "Pharaoh"-riddim comes from a big man, Dr.Ring-Ding's great anti-war tune "Bombs Over Baghdad". Pionear's own latest riddim, about to be released, but having been one week long available free in the form of a download of Dr.Ring-Ding's latest tune "Mafia" from the Germaican Records website at www.germaica.net gets a 'St.Lucia refix' as a tribute to Pionear's Jamaican mentor King Jammy's, who released in '99 his first riddim "Final Judgment" (the riddim that was also voiced as "Lion" for the combination of Gentleman & Tolga on Gentleman's debut album "Trodin' On"), and who has his studio premises at St.Lucia Road in Kingston, is up next. And it hits hard in the version of madmen Ward 21, who introduce a similar sick mind in Ill Inspecta alongside them, in the rough "Rude Bwoy Patrol". Ill Inspecta delivers an over the top solo track over "Typhoon" as well, the outrageous gun tune "Funeral", before Tanya Stephens once again proves that she is in topform over Germ(aica)n riddims with her bashment lyrics in "Party Tonight", and T.O.K. get a chance to show the same thing as well. Their "Shining Star" over the "Cure"-riddim was one of the standout tracks on "Shining Stars Vol.1", and now they contribute the strong yet lyrically completely different "Real Gangsta". Seeed's second riddim featured on this album has recently been reviewed here when their "The Electric Boogie EP" was released. It's a pity (pun intended) that we are treated to only one tune out of the four on the riddim that didn't appear on that EP, as there were versions available of the riddim by Chico, Nosliw and CÚCile as well. But honestly I have to admit that if you don't have the EP, you'd at least want the four versions featured on this album. (And maybe scratch the back of your head and rethink having quit buying vinyl... to get the others mentioned.) D-Flame first self-produced dancehall riddim for Germaican Records is the infectious "Stopp", on which he delivers the song with the same name about the same dance, also on his current strong album "Unaufhaltsam". CÚCile, who is at the moment probably the only competition for Tanya Stephens as the lady ruling the dancehalls, delivers the excellent "Hardcore Lovin'", and Chico once again gets in a strong tune with his anti-police-enforcement "Tired A Di Raid", and so does Spectacular with the uplifting anti-Babylon tune "Move". There's only one negative thing that can be said about this album, and that is the fact that it's only 16 tracks long, because I would have loved to be treated to twice as much of these great tunes. Don't say I didn't recommend it if you miss out on this album, but better yet, get it. Fast!Souljah.