U.S.-based reggae labels are once again heating up. In the 1980s, labels like Nighthawk–home to The Itals, The Gladiators, etc.–and Shanachie–with artists like Augustus Pablo and Culture–were among a healthy crop of American imprints offering consistently excellent releases by Jamaica’s best. Now, operations like VP Records handle mainly bigger releases, but several young 7” boutique labels are making their mark. Oakland’s four-year running Lustre Kings had success recently with their Red Razor riddim (Luciano, Norris Man, Natty King), and now New Jersey’s Upful One Records  presents their latest, The Scalawag Riddim. Produced by Jillian Wess, Luciano’s “When Music Hits,” along with other tracks on the version, sounds well nice!

The always-insightful Yard Flex.com hits us with an excellent commentary exploring the history of betrayal in dancehall music culture. From Supercat and Ninja Man’s falling out, to Bounty Killer and Vybz Kartel, Flex breaks down the history of how dancehall is a fractious business.

Speaking of betrayal and envy–is this also a growing trend among female dancers and club attendants? The Jamaica Star reports on the x-rated dance-and fashion competitions captured under the ever-present glare of dancehall-party videographers’ “video light.”

More related dancehall business: the latest on clubs, street dances, dance moves, videos, and mixed CDs at one of the web’s most devoted ragga one-stops–Dancehall Reggae.