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World Music CD Reviews Reggae & Caribbean

SIZZLA

By JUDSON KILPATRICK
Published April 7, 2006

Da Real Thing
VP

Ghetto Revolution
Greensleeves

One of the most prolific dancehall artists ever, Sizzla Kalonji (Miguel Collins) is dropping an average of three albums a year (compare that to Sean Paul, who spends about two years an album). On Ghetto Revolution, Sizzla worked with longtime producer Phillip “Fatis” Burrell of Xterminator fame. Most tracks are roots-style, lyrics mostly conscious, as on the standout “Jah Will Be There.” The ballad “Just Fine” adds soft dynamic, while the hip-hopping “The Truth Is Revealing” is sure to spark a crowd. Also of note is the anti-abortion message of “Love The Little Children.” Even better is Da Real Thing, produced by Bobby Digital, the man behind Sizzla’s classic Black Woman & Child. Every song here is good, and often great, and surprisingly diverse. For “Rejoice,” Digital delivers similar rhythms to Buju Banton’s “Murderer.” There is a very catchy pro-marijuana track (“Got It Right Here”), and on Sizzla’s duet with Rochelle (“Touch Me”), the music sounds like live soul á la the Brand New Heavies. If you’re buying just one, make it Da Real Thing.