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Warrior King 

Virtuous Woman (VP)

Ever since the ruff and gruff raga DJ Shabba Ranks started having crossover reggae hits in the early '90s, much of what has followed in his wake has elevated style over substance. What reggae's been missing is simply good songs. Which is exactly what makes Warrior King's full-length debut so compelling.

The irresistible title cut's the single that brought Warrior King his initial success. Who but the clinically depressed could not help but bob their heads to the intro's melodious "Do-ba do-ba, Do-ba do-ba day . . ."? Subsequent follow-ups like "Never Go Where Pagans Go" and "Empress So Divine" confirm that Warrior King is a serious talent. All three singles are included here, along with freshly recorded gems such as the reflective "Education Is the Key" and "Breath of Fresh Air," a perfectly self-descriptive title. Honestly, we haven't heard such innovative and refreshing sounds out of Jamaica for a long time.

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