Goldfrapp / Various Ghetto Story

With this record’s title track, Cham — no longer Baby Cham — has written what surely will become one of dancehall’s enduring classics. Already a massive talent in dancehall, Cham’s delivery is confident and forceful and his lyrics are often intelligent and insightful. "Ghetto Story” is a reality poem — an autobiography of a ghetto life, and as such is gritty and heart-wrenching, made all the more potent by Cham’s ability to express his lyrics in different voices and tonalities. This attitude is furthered on "Rudeboy Pledge,” an I won’t-forget-where-I-came-from lyric that makes it clear Cham is all about honour and responsibility not bling. Elsewhere, however, Cham is content to follow Beenie Man and Sean Paul’s lead with carnal party starters like "Vitamin S” and "Fat Punnany (Hottie Hottie Girl)” or take a page from hip-hop’s how-to by glorifying violence ("Tic Toc” and "Wah Dem A Seh Now?”), and, in an about turn from the sentiment on "Rudeboy,” show off his material wares on "Bring it On.” So while Capleton-esque roots and culture Ghetto Story isn’t, Cham will no doubt pick up where Mr. Dutty Rock left off, and gain a bit of extra credibility for his few reality lyrics in the process. (Mad House)