Max Romeo - Pocomania Songs (Ariwa)
The first album of living reggae legend Max Romeo for Mad Professor's Ariwa label has sadly turned out to be somewhat of a disappointment.
Tarrus Riley - Parables (VP Records)
Tarrus Riley (son of legend Winston Riley) is a newcomer to the VP stable.
Various Artists - King Jammy's: Selector's Choice Volume 1, 2, 3 & 4 (VP Records)
For fans of eighties producer par excellence, King Jammy, the year couldn't have started any better.
Anthony B - Suffering Man (Tad's Record)
Anthony B's latest, 'Suffering Man', on the Jamaican Tad's Record label, starts splendidly with 'Bless Up', a great tune on the Cuss Cuss riddim, but keeping that level up for 21 tracks seems a bridge too far, even for Anthony B.
The Congos - Swinging Bridge (Médiacom/Nocturne)
Equaling the level of the legendary 'Heart Of The Congos' seems a near impossible task, but with 'Swinging Bridge' the recently reunited Congos (now all gentlemen of a respectable age) have produced their best album in years.
Roger Robin - Take It Slow (VP Records)
Yours truly had honestly never heard of Roger Robin, but the man turns out to have a velvet voice reminiscent of that of Maxi Priest and therefore extremely suitable for a lovers rock album.
Elijah Prophet - King Of Kings (PowPow Productions)
Truth be told, yours truly is a huge fan of Elijah Prophet.
Perfect Giddimani - Giddimani + Spectacular - Find Yourself (DHF Records)
The debut album of Jamaica's latest singjay-revelation Perfect, who earlier this year stormed the charts with 'Handcart Bwoy' and 'Amerimaka', is ultimately released by the Austrian DHF Records label (DHF stands for "dancehallfieber").
Various Artists - King At The Controls, King Jammy Essential Hits From Reggae's Digital Revolution 1985 - 1989 (VP Records)
With the anniversary of the Sleng Teng riddim still fresh in the collective memory, VP Records now pays tribute to the pioneer of digital reggae, producer King Jammy.
Pama International - Trojan Sessions (Trojan/Sanctuary)
Pama International had the honor of being the first band in years to be offered a recording contract by Trojan/Sanctuary! Which poses the question: "Who the hell are these guys?" They describe themselves as a soul-injected ska, rocksteady & dub sensation for the 21st century and their sound can hardly be described better than that.
Natural Black - Far From Reality (Greensleeves)
Stating Jamaica is overflowing with musical talent is probably still an understatement, so question is if the island is still in need of foreign influences? Apparently it is, because British Guyana-born Natural Black is doing far from bad in the Jamaican charts.
King Tubby - King Tubby Meets Jacob Miller In A Tenement Yard (Motion Records)
'King Tubby Meets Jacob Miller In A Tenement Yard' is a curiosity in every way you want to look at it.
I Kong - The Way It Is (VP Records)
With its Reggae Rewind series VP Records is focusing on the rerelease of a number of classic reggae albums.
Gyptian - My Name Is Gyptian (VP Records)
Mellifluous is the first adjective that springs to mind when listening to 'My Name Is Gyptian' and just as with honey drizzled Turkish desserts, this will be too sweet for some.
Lutan Fyah - Healthy Lifestyle (VP Records)
Just a few months after the release of the impressive 'Phantom War' album Lutan Fyah is back with this Xterminator production by producer Phillip 'Fattis' Burrell (no stranger to real reggae fanatics as he's responsible for countless hit productions from the likes of Sizzla, Luciano, Cocoa Tea and many others).
Leroy Brown - Genuine Love (Dakarai Music International)
'Genuine Love', the new album by Leroy Brown, doesn't resemble 'Color Barier' (a fantastic rerelease by Makasound) the slightest bit.
Martin Jondo - Echo & Smoke (Homeground/Grooveattack)
Germany's latest reggae revelation is.
Abisha - Natural Feelin' (Kiddus Music)
Kiddus Music, yet another new reggae label from France, proudly presents 'Natural Feelin'', the debut album by Abisha, France's newest roots revelation.
Black Uhuru - Black Sounds Of Freedom (Greensleeves)
In their reggae classics re-issue series the Greensleeves label this time tackles the classic 'Black Sounds Of Freedom' album by Black Uhuru.
Sunshiners - Sunshiners (Jive Epic/Sony BMG)
In the category "oddity of the month" this Sunshiners album can definitely count.