Available on: Blessed Youth Music riddim pack

Every week or so I hear a new name in dancehall. Sometimes they grow to be stars (Black Ryno, Papcaan), but usually I’ll never hear of them again (Accent Dougal, Torch). Not everyone can match the work rate, determination and creativity of the big deejays who deliver big lyrics and flows weekly. Busy Signal, Mavado or Vybz Kartel can come out with smashes at the drop of a hat, while the underdogs have all the time in the world to prepare and yet repeatedly fail.

‘Flash Forward Riddim’ though, seems to break the mould. Featuring a cast of UK no-names on vocal duty, I think this could be the start of something special. Wundah draws for some spooky synths somewhere between Mims’ ‘This Is Why I’m Hot’, Cashflow’s ‘Orange Hill Riddim’, and S-X’s ‘Wooo Riddim to lace a solid update on the classic ‘90s ragga drum pattern, switching up the kicks every few bars and bringing a 2010 Bam Bam feel to the table. He also grabs a piece for himself with his vocal of the riddim, ‘All Night Long’, proving that his talents are not just confined to production.

Jah Thunder provides a memorable AutoTuned version sounding as righteous as Munga Honorebel, even coming out on top after a weird off-key chorus. G Starr brings the slickest version with a Sean Paul-alike flow, “keeping the fire burning” on ‘Make Money’. Lea-Anna’s ‘Dis A Weh Mi Know’ is the only female version and skirts the ground between traditional female yard chat like Lady Saw, Spice or D’Angel, and the R’n’B smoothness of  Kris Kelli or Brown Sugar. Warning Crew’s contribution is a tribute to the Blackberry with all the PIN and accessory chat you would expect, but the short T.O.K-inspired verses work well. Redd Man jumps on the new trend to AutoTune his voice into a deep digital rumble, not just surviving it but putting himself in the runnings for man of the match. Blessed Youth Music and all these artists are definitely ones to watch.

Tom Reid



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