When presenting a new album, 'Breaking News' is of course far from a bad title. Even though If Dezarie can deservedly be regarded as the queen of the Virgin Island reggae, Reemah (real name Juliette Vanterpool) can definitely claim the title of crown princess. With 'Breaking News', the singer from Saint Croix is releasing her second album. Reemah made her first appearance in 'Chance To Grow', a song on 'Break The Soil', a 2006 Bambu Station album. In 2012 she released her acclaimed debut album 'Check Your Words', for which she mainly collaborated with producer Kedroy 'Catalyst' Mitchell (former keyboardist with Bambu Station), but also with Bambu Station vocalist/guitarist/keyboardist Jalani Horton and Laurent 'Tippy' Alfred of I Grade Records, and now there's successor 'Breaking News'. Reemah once again joined forces with Catalyst, for what immediately stuck us as a far more varied album than her debut effort. In dreamy opener 'Far Away', Reemah's voice reminded us of that of Jamaican legend Marcia Griffiths, but title song 'Breaking News', in which Reemah sweeps the floor with the mass media only interested in clicks and manipulating their reading or viewing audience, sounds much more militant. The positive mantra 'Give Thanks Everyday' was given a slight Latin touch thanks to the Spanish guitar licks of Jerry Simon. If you're a reggae artist from the Virgin Islands, you just can't escape comparisons with Virgin Islands powerhouse Midnite and Vaughn Benjamin's crypto-mystical writings. Reemah's lyrics are generally much more accessible than those of Benjamin, but with songs like 'Crowns Upon Your Head', in which she refers to the great black civilizations of old, and 'High Powaz', about the strength one can draw from Jah, she comes quite close. In the slow-paced 'Modern Day', the US gets a serious dressing-down, resulting in, among other things, the following great verse:
"The American Dream?
You got to in a deep sleep to believe in the American regime!"
Other highlights include 'Warn Dem' and 'May Day', both in the same vein, featuring that wonderfully rolling bass so typical of Virgin Islands reggae. Excellent second album by a singer who clearly continues to grow!