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this album is still far too slept on, despite the blog love**. ignore them clowns sayin its boring, they probably think pills exitement personified. maybe if you double drop his namesake prior to listening.
they were label-mates so i dunno if it was cos rick had to be back at the half-way house before the street-lights came on but his presence is sorely missed here. its such a shame the only other vids of him from his post-prison peak*** are the two outkast ones (im baffled by the decision to leave the rick version off aquemini, videos a classic too.) and the kinda whatever one with rae, cos this song pips em all for me.
despite all their (many, many) misguided ideals, one thing i think them “back to the golden era” squares got right is lamenting the death of the focused, concise album. (and the album format in general too but thats a pretty pointless stance to take these days, mixtapes/internet have it’s grave mostly dug already. plus theyv balanced it with a lot of positives that didnt exist before). rappers getting their point across in half an hour to 45 mins whilst funneling all their creativity and energy into only a couple of songs is the biggest reason for what made ’86-95 so great in my opinion. the shit people use as filler nowadays probably woulda worked great as a b-side or rightly just ended up on the cuttin room floor (not talking bout leaks, but outside of sample-clearance issues and that is “unreleased” even a thing any more?)
and even if somehow you do make a great modern 20-plus song rap album with little to no filler its inevitable its not going to keep the momentum going and stop the listener’s attention from waning, what im getting at is da dirty 30 is the only rap album im aware of that has a ridiculous amount of songs/skits yet still doesnt overstay its welcome.
like o-dub said, yogis a great producer and despite the beats for the most part being decidely dank and moody, the group do a great job of keeping the atmosphere varied and balanced throughout the album. one factor in this is the rappers, who while not exactly busta-like in your face-personalities, have unique, well-formed styles and voices that are very distinct from each other and are charismatic enough to keep you interested and funny enough to make a decent contrast to the darker in tone production. speaking of which, bring back the mighty ha! its like ol dirty, biz and party arty had a lovechild who somehow didnt end up being born brain-damaged.
part of what made the wu, tribe, ugk, epmd, geto boys, outkast, cliche, cliche, cliche such great album artists was the members were so different from each other while still keeping a common thread, unlike a lot of these recent cobbled together “supergroups” (the bay’s the worst for this, especially lately but its forgivable cos its resulted in a bunch of great music coming out at a faster rate without much of a drop in quality control.) that are really contrived and dont sound natural at all. this doesnt apply to all groups obviously, i mean i still cant tell the clipse apart half the time and theyv made a classic and a pretty great album but the scales seem to tip in that direction.
(article via scratch magazine)
*was hiphopisread and em around in may 07? cant remember.
** i layed down some ground rules before starting this blog, and one of em was that id talk bout genuinely slept-on, unmentioned albums and not blog-hyped shit like this but im makin an exeption this time. mainly cos iv read a way way more about how this albums championed online then the actual championing itself. plus its a great album so fuck it whats one more drop in the self-important pretend journalist ocean.
*** i said it. he has far more great songs from the eighties/early nineties but his late-ninties onwards guest features were flawless and ‘storytellins his best album in my opinion. some of the great adventures.. production was really weak plus la di da di and the show arent even on there, which is indefensible. yeh im a newjack and im listening outta context but i mess with rick heavy so fuck your opinion.