MOP: “WARRIORZ” (LOUD RECORDS)
It’s been a long time coming, but MOP has finally arrived. After blazing the hardcore heads for the
last decade, the Mash Out Posse delivers Warriorz, a testament to the streets. Since the days of
“How About Some Hardcore” through “Handle ur Bizness,” this Brownsville duo has delivered the pure
street thug shit over Premier’s smoke inducing beats. In an age of flossy, jiggified, bling blingers, MOP keeps it grimy, while proclaiming to, “kick all y’all ass with the same pair of boots” (anyone who’s seen them live knows this is truth, as the first family rolls approximately 30 deep at least). “Warriorz” shines as one of the top albums of the year. From the summer hit of “Ante up” to the Foreigner-sampled “Cold as Ice,” MOP creates a setting of both mayhem and music. This cd is guaranteed to thump the nyc streets from the South Bronx to SoHo for months to come. So the next time that ups man or taxi cab driver screams utterances of ante up and clak-clak, u’ll know that’s some MOP shit.
PRODIGY: “HNIC”
For as long as hip hop has been around, protecting your area has been crucial: BDP and the Bronx; Wu-Tang and ‘Shaolin;’ Boot Camp and Brooklyn. One borough whose soldiers are constantly representing is Queens, specifically queensbridge. From MC Shan, to Nasty Nas (before Esco), through to Cormega and Nature, no district has more pride going for it. One MC who has been holding it down for the ’Bridge since the early nineties is Prodigy; one half of the hard hitting thug tandem, Mobb Deep. responsible for infamous hits as “Shook Ones,” “G.O.D. Pt. 3,” and “Quiet Storm,” prodigy steps back for a solo joint as the self proclaimed, “Head Nigga in Charge.” While retaining the eerie Havoc-produced tracks, Prodigy employs the services of proven beat maestros Rockwilder and Alchemist to compliment the thuggish, but subtle rhyme flows. The album’s highlights range from the dissed out “Wanna Be thug,” to the bumpin’ “Do It” for the club spot, then peaking at the current banger “Keep It Thoro“. For the most part, the album succeeds at continuing the current queensbridge hot streak. This should hold off all the Mobb fans until the next album or movie.
TALIB KWELI AND DJ HI TEK: “REFLECTION ETERNAL” (RAWKUS)
The last few years have seen independent record labels come and go, but one who has proven staying power is Rawkus. Creating underground heros such as Mos Def and Pharoahe Monche, this label continues to deliver excellence in a time where mediocrity perseveres. One group that has been slowly making it happen for them is Reflection Eternal, a.k.a. Kweli and Hi Tek. Some of the deeper heads will remember these phenoms from joints like “2000 Seasons,” and Black Star’s “Definition.” Keeping up with the formula (mind-puzzling wordplay + obscure crafted beat construction = classic), Reflection Eternal raises the bar for the industry. Check “This Means U,” “Ghetto Afterlife,” and the building shaking “Move Something” for proof. Hi Tek proves his worth as one the hottest producers out, and Talib Kweli proves, yet again, that you don’t have to commit manslaughter on wax to get respect.
AZZIDO DA BASS: DOOMS NIGHT
I’m not sure what this is. It has some crazy whirring noises, building into a crescendo
of ill bleeps. Not gonna try to explain any further, but it is a must have for the loft party people.
HIP HOP LIST
Royce the 5 9 - “Double Homicide“
MOP - “Cold As Ice“
Prodigy - “Wanna Be Thugs“
QB Finest - “Bridge 2001“
Wutang - “Jump off“
Slum Village - “Forth and Back“
Afu Ra - “Equality“
Mos Def and Ghostface - “Ms. Fat Booty 2“
Big L - “Deadly Combination” (remix)
Guru and Erykah Badu - “Plenty“
HOUSE LIST
Miguel Migs - “Mi Destino{
Club Session - “Don’t Move” (j cutler remixes)
Ebe - “Square 4“
Forme - “Aquanote“
Mezzoforte - “Garden Party“
Mr. Ciao - “I Love U Better“
Johhny Corporate - “Sunday Shoutin“
Casey Hogan - “Urban Nightime“
Xpress 2 - “AC/DC“
Dj Rolando - “Jaguar” (remixes)