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"One Album Wonder" Wednesdays

by Eric on May 9, 2007

Mad Flava-From Tha Ground Unda

“I like to smoke weed & listen to Hip Hop”….original Mad Flava was not. Well, let’s see if you mixed a lil’ Cypress Hill with a twist of House Of Pain and don’t forget to throw in a little bit of Total Devastation, what would you get? Your answer may as well be Mad Flava. If I didn’t know any better I would’ve sworn that Muggs did the production, although I highly doubt that he would reuse a sample that was made quite popular by someone else. For instance, take “Spread Tha Butta” already flipped perfectly by the Black Sheep (“Flavor Of The Month”) or what about “Fools” which utilized the same sample as Wu-Tang’s “C.R.E.A.M.”. Hailing from Dallas????, this four man crew could’ve made good capitalizing on the success of Cypress and House Of Pain, but by the time this album dropped the public had already had it’s fill on the aforementioned groups before 94′ rolled around. Released on Priority in 1994 “From Tha’ Ground Unda” failed to gain a any major buzz, possibly due to fact that the majority of subject matter is quite repetitive…flow, flow and more flow, with tales of smokin’ an overabundance of greenery. Oh, and you can catch a glimpse of MC Cold Chris giving you the business about industry rules 4080-4091 at Press Rewind If I Haven’t Blown Your Mind(this site is the next best thing to having any old rap mag laying around the house). Still, a nice piece of nostalgia…but I’d much rather listen to the debut albums of both Cypress Hill & House Of Pain…-words by Eric

INI-Center Of Attention

Breezing through these cyber spheres trying to entertain yourself, you’ll come across a lot of old jewels and often the terms “most slept-on” or “overlooked” pop out of nowhere to describe the entity and importance of albums less appreciated. Well, here’s an album that never really came out!!! Pete Rock signed a distribution deal with Elektra back in 1994 and started to record with some of his family members including the group INI. They released a single, “Fakin’ Jax” using the legendary Havoc line “No time for faking jacks…”, one year later and then came silence. Beside a couple of bootlegs (this very album included) you didn’t hear much more and the group, their unborn legacy and their existence was simply shelved and sent to an obscure oblivion. First and foremost, it was said that Elektra had dropped Pete Rock’s imprint Soul Brother Records, then there were rumors of him and CL breaking their ties and I guess the rest is considered history. I actually received a promo copy of the CD in 96 and fell instantly in love with the smoothness and depth of content. Some might argue that this is not the best body of work Pete Rock has laid hands on- especially if you only listen to the instrumentals- but I have to disagree. The beatsmith Pete Rock provided a fantastic ground for all the group members to take a lyrical journey. These guys had flows for days as cemented by Grap Luva on their first single’s second verse where he claims: “Is this the real definition of what a snake is / Yall should’ve been politicians, that’s where the cake is”… Overall, a magnificent album with every aspect a true fan could ever crave for. This is real big…-words by Rasul

Kurious-A Constipated Monkey

Bobbito and Strech Armstrong’s radio show on WKCR gave a stage for many MC’s to display the verbal dexterity. This was a place where legends were born. Besides, the show was all the way hilarious to listen to (courtesy of Lord Sear) and if you ever had the privilege to hear one of their shows, you would understand where I’m coming from. Kurious Jorge was closely associated with these guys and I first heard him spit on Pete Nice his solo effort. Then came the massive “Walk Like A Duck” produced by the Beatnuts with a strange looking Lord Sear in the video, and shortly afterwards the album dropped! The majority of the beats is provided by the Beatnuts and the SD50s (Dante Ross his Stimulated Dummies), ranging somewhere between classic New York and Cypress Hill grime. Kurious is not the most prolific or gifted craftsman; his delivery is always on point, his voice sounds controlled, and his content touches the expected arrays. What made this Boricua stand out was his honesty. He handled every track with a great amount of concerned humility, opening up his soul to the listeners with an innocent expression (check out “Nikole” and you’ll get an idea). Overall a beautiful pick by Eric that fits today’s category like a glove. Flawless album…-words by Rasul

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TJ May 10, 2007 at 9:36 pm
Commish CH May 11, 2007 at 6:23 pm

“tabs on my tounge as i swung from the swing, and came up with the thing they call walk like a duck…quite frankly don’t give a f*ck”

that was my ish in late 92. I know he went on to do some Doom/Monsta Island Czar stuff, but other than that, who knows?

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