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by Eric on June 1, 2007

Public Enemy-Apocalypse 91: The Enemy Strikes Black

“The Future Holds Nothing But Confrontation”….ooohh, “Lost At Birth” blasted “Apocalypse 91″ out of the gate didn’t it? Now I’ll admit, I wasn’t a big fan of “Apocalypse…” for about the first month after it’s release. Why? The reason being simply because “Fear Of A Black Planet” & “It Takes A Nation Of Millions” are just classics…period, it’s extremely hard to match the brilliance of those two LPs. So of course I was let down just a bit, but for some odd reason I’ve been playing “Apocalype” quite a bit lately and I’ve come to find a few gems that I may have missed out on during my Freshman year when this album was released. After hearing Pharoahe Monch’s rendition of P.E.’s “Welcome To The Terrordome” on his advance copy of the long awaited “Desire”, I’ve come to realize just how powerful Chuck D’s words were. I mean think about it, dude never even rhymed half the time. Listen to most of P.E.’s stuff, it sound as if he’s just carrying on a conversation with the listener. The thing is, it’s his delivery and the way he commanded the mic that was unparalleled by anyone else who professed to be an MC at the time. Of course, you had the other intangibles as well…. the boisterous, crowd pleasing Flavor Flav, Terminator X on the cut and the masterful production of the Bomb Squad (beautiful noize). Released in 1991, “Apocalypse…” was introduced to the masses with the lead single “Can’t Truss It”, later on that same year they dropped the controversial “By The Time I Get To Arizona” (which discussed Arizona being the only state not honoring Martin Luther King day). In my opinion, the real gems on “Apocalypse..”, where “Shut Em’ Down” (even though Pete Rock killed it on the remix), “Nighttrain” (again, check for the Soul Brother #1 remix) and “Get The F…Outta’ Dodge (damn, that beat was HARD). There is a little filler to be found here, which in my opinion is anything Flav ever attempted to rhyme on (with the exception of “Can’t Do Nuttin’ For Ya Man”). Unfortunately, this album really seems to get overlooked when discussing Public Enemy legacy, which in all fairness is likely due to the impact that the releases prior to “Apocalypse..” created for the Hip Hop community. Still, don’t sleep on P.E. and this gem from the 91′…-Eric

Big Daddy Kane-Prince Of Darkness

While definitely not up to par with “It’s A Big Daddy Thing” or “Long Live The Kane”, but without a doubt a better album than “Taste Of Chocolate” (what was Kane thinkin’ with that one?), Big Daddy Kane’s fourth release “Prince Of Darkness” was yet another letdown for most die hard Kane fans. As big a dropoff in quality as “Prince Of Darkness” was in comparison to Kane’s first two discs, it still had it’s moments..both good & bad. Let’s just start with the good, believe it or not I do like the title cut which also is the first cut as well. Of course, it’s also the track in which Kane blatantly lets the listener know his intent for the rest of the album…mackin’ the ladies!! Secondly, “Come On Down” f. Q-Tip and Busta Rhymes (who served as the cleanup man on countless posse cuts throughout the golden years) is pretty nice…but still, it’s not up two par with any of Kane’s previously released classics. Finally, if there is one unforgettable moment from “Prince…” is has to be the Lil’ Daddy Shane assisted “Brother, Brother”, which samples Barry White’s classic “Playing Your Game, Baby” (more on this sample in a few days…stay tuned!) beautifully as Kane and his Lil’ Brother go back and forth on the mic. Okay, now for the bad…”Troubled Man”, “Groove With It” & “The Lover In You” all find Kane attempting to cater to the ladies only to find each track falling flat on it’s face. Well, maybe I’ll take “The Lover In You” back, I actually did kinda’ like that sh*t as a youngster. The only time a may dust this album off is just for the previously mentioned “Brother, Brother”, other than that the “Prince Of Darkness” faded into the piles of unlistenable material for me. Still, were goin’ back to 1991 and it just so happens that was the year “Prince Of Darkness” dropped so listen if you dare…-Eric

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{ 1 comment }

the letter d June 1, 2007 at 4:53 am

Two of my favorites. I always bumped the shit out of that P.E. becuase it had that west coast funk sound to a lot of it. Destroyed the speakers in the car.

And that Kane, yeah it has some crap on it but the good songs definitely outweighed the bad. However, and of course you can have your own opinion, I must respectfully suggest that either you mixed “Troubled Man” up with either the cut before or after it or you must not have ever listened past the intro of it. No way I’d call that a ladies cut. Kane rips that shit.

Great post.

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