I just remembered I’d bought Check The Technique after copping it during the summer and that I’d not even completed reading it, partly cos I’m not tryna hear Krazy Drayzy & Skoob extrapolate on what each iggedy symbolizes or yet another meandering Questlove anecdote on that time he quantisized the drums on some Macy Gray/Jamie Cullum collabo just right but mainly cos post-all these Vibe/XXl Making Of… listicles, the book lost a bunch of the impact it had when it was a one-off, rare glimpse behind the curtain. Don’t get me wrong I eat this kinda shite up like every other european person deprived of insider info on the greatest genre (I know home videos is stuffwhiteppllikedotcom but fucks sake -WHERES THE 80S VHS FOOTAGE MANE) but here, if its a choice between Mannie Fresh telling me how he instructed BG to rap like Melle Mel, Dj Quik hating people he used to be friends with or some Felicity supporting character who named himself Butterfly on purpose yammering on about his poorly mastered proto-jazzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzcafeQuare-ian slam session I’ve forgotten what the question was THIS HOT WHEN YOU PLAY WITH A PEPPER BOY NOW FRYYYYYYYYYY BUUD BLUH WHA
Anyways I bring up this (actually pretty great, cop that cop that) book cos supposedly the main reason it even exists is due to the dearth of behind the scenes-type liner notes rap music has been afforded, which seems to have begun to be remedied (way too late, lol buying rap music in 2011) with extensive Criminal Minded reissues and the like but is still paltry as fuck when compared to lesser genres. This is a fair point but the book failed to mention something relevant rap had over hand and fist on those – the mandatory thank you section.
From Jungle Brothers and Public Enemy breaking it down into award show-ish sub- groupings like Extra Strength Posse and The Future, Dante the scrub/duck, Black Rob giving dap to never heard from again round-the-way heads like Slop and Cypress Hill petitioning to legalize weed like its a film with “campus” in the title, you get way more insight into the minds behind the creative process than Gil Evans busting nuts over some groundbreaking chord structure. The fact lads put so much effort into something which could probably appear equally fanboyish and equivelant to waving at ma dukes first time youre on telly, is kinda heart-warming imo no norbit. But even with albums that weren’t as devoted for whatever reason: whether budget constrictions, regional aesthetic or just general apathy, the lack of liner note gratitude was typically supplemented by a lengthy shouts outs joint bookending the album which usually had way more lasting value anyways.
Phil takes the lesser traveled but prefferable option of turning the traditional “name a bunch of people over something which prolly would be better off underneath raps” format and making an actual song of the instrumental Mannie made using the same electric guitar sample almost as well as Pimp C did on Bout To Go Down. If the rest of the songs on the album were Phil telling us who he considers an “uptown soldier” bounce-style over similar production it’d easily be vying for mid 90s N.O. classic status, along with Uptown 4 Life, Solja Rags, Bloody City, Fours, Dueces & Trays, True and the 50 others i’ve yet to steal off the internet.
Fuck a influences/ explicit tribute tune cos despite the occasional worthy example still being made they’ve been ruined for the most part by the kind of clownshoes who encourages a former Slum Village dubcee to remake Illmatic. Nothings ever gonna top Hip Hop vs Rap or Ego Trippin (part 2) anyways. Shouts out to DJ Paul and Juicy J for abandoning any pretence of Art or paying respects by throwing ads for upcoming Hypnotize Mindz projects on the end of albums ala Too Short on the Get In Where You Fit In title track that are way more entertaining than most of these gobsheen’s actual albums.
Another mid-90s Mannie Fresh produced N.O. dude who while never making an album I can enjoy the whole way through before succumbing to the Cash Money curse of um, dying of unnatural causes, made this pre-Hot Boys posse cut thats at least as good as anything on Mic Geronimo or [insert similarly ovverated mid-90s rapper]’s debut albums.
While his Paul & Juicy produced solo album was a(n actual) minor classic I always felt Indo G’s real masterpeice was his second album with the amusingly named superior double-time technician Lil’ Blunt, as it has a feature from a in-his-prime Lord Infamous, a song making fine use of the Boyz In The Hood/Front, Back & Side to Side drum ticcaboom thing containing the jewel:
I GOT THIS BITCH NAMED HILLARY UP ON CAPITAL HILL
SHE GOT A TRICK NAMED BILL BUT SHE LIKES TO MAKE ME FEEL
REAL GOOD UP IN MY HOOD SHE SENDS ME MONEY MY N**
BUT THEN SHE GOT ME THINKING TWICE EVERY TIME I TAKE A SWIG
FROM MY 40 SHE SAYS THAT SHIT IS BAD FOR MY HEALTH
I CANT TELL. MR PRESIDENT DID YOU INHALE?
DONT WANNA HEAR THAT BULLSHIT LIKE MIKE TYSON HAD TO RAPE HER
AND JUST LIKE ROBIN GIVENS THAT BITCH WAS ALL ABOUT THE PAPER
and one more hard as cooked rocks entry into the songs named Cocaine canon:
Whats the deal with nary a rap internet talking about Live From Harris County Jail btw? Its really fucking great, if clearly unfinished as a bunch of songs have gaping unmastered holes in them but this shit has gotten far more play by me over the years than Trilla/Pimpalation/Sweet James Jones Stories/Side Hustles/UGK 4 Life or any the post Pimp C carking it UGK solos i refuse to subject myself to.
I find it very difficult to believe this is one of those J Prince’d non consentual remix albums either cos well, its not unlistenable plus its a pimp in prison quasi-concept album with a consistent bluesy country rap vibe throughout that really sounds like either Tony Snow himself, Cory Mo or someone equally sussed was responsible for all the production. Shit, it even has a non-cringeworthy rappers inna dancehall joint, in case you ever wondered what his and Bun’s original reggae-influenced group 4 Black Ministers might’ve sounded like. I’m particularly fond of the Saturday Love (as reinterpolated on the why the fuck wasnt it an official 2011 video single Biggavell joint Where Do I go (BBQ Music)) riffing Pimping Aint Dead and this song which expounds on his wish for a “clean ass hoe with no disease”:
Plus no Drake features, so yeh.
If above dude and the classic Hustle & Flow taught us anything,(apart from that the old dudes who vote on the oscars without ever watching any films have nieces/nephews who fux with Memphis) its that activities that you’re supposed to frown upon heavy while in the prescence of your wife/main beezie/ball & chain are perfectly acceptable if you put them in the right context but occasionally you find something that might have you jumping for the stereo for the first time since that time you remembered you left the tape with Blowjob Betty on it in your mother’s car.
Any beore in a pantsuit in 2011 at all familiar with rap music probably wouldnt find a song leaning on the much-used OJS INNOCENT angle all that reprehensible but if you rap along in her presence to the one doing that by taking the fall for him and explaining How I Did It (somewhat similar to the manual Ron Goldman’s family released a decade later) don’t be expecting no breakfast blowie the next morning broham.