Friday, January 13, 2012

KRS-One - KRS-One (1995)

KRS-One — KRS-One (1995)


Released after KRS-One’s debut album, “Return of the Boom Bap”, his sophomore effort features production from the man himself DJ Premier and the D.I.T.C crew, KRS-One shows an ear for beats, and pen for his lyrics.

1. Rappaz R.N. Dainja

KRS-One’s self-respect is out of this room, his ego is seemingly daring, menacing, and unforgiving. KRS-One dominates a track with out an overdone flow, he brings his battle-type raps to the boombox. DJ Premier’s scratching is music to anyone’s ears, the heavy sampled horns are mean, brash, and stupid. KRS-One spits braggadocio, rewind this tape back boy…
No one is new to this or new to Kris
In hip-hop’s atomic structure, I am the nucleus”

2. De Automatic

KRS-One’s reggae influenced sing-rap is evident, KRS-One hits us with a dirty mouth, and striking mic presence. The instrumental is simple, not overdone, or as in your face as his opening song. His battle-raps are inspired his determination to become better than the competition, with Fat Joe outro-ing the song, it makes for a solid follow up

3. MC’s Act Like They Don’t Know

With KRS-One interpolating Kurtis Blow’s “The Breaks” in the intro, you know the old-school is here. DJ Premier’s instrumental is perfect. A dark, conflicted sound, captured by KRS-One’s subject matter. He spits on how MC’s can’t pertain to Hip Hop traditions within freestyling, and live performances. Evidence: This still holds true to today.

4. Ah-Yeah

A dark, gritty, teeth-shredding instrumental, reminiscent of Boogie Down Production’s Sex and Violence, KRS-One self produces, writes, and performs his own song. KRS-One again riots with a dirty mouth, bragging his battle credentials, and fierceness.

5. R.E.A.L.I.T.Y.

In contrast to KRS-One’s song on this album so far, the instrumental is smooth, relaxed, calm, yet confident. Not something too bragging, or gritty. KRS-One spits the knowledge on his opinions of Hip Hop culture, black youth, and of course the reality of life
“But Hip Hop as a culture is what we give it
But sometimes the culture contradicts how we live it”

6. Free Mumia

Ft. Channel Live
Knowledge for the people!. Channel Live raps about social and political issues. The instrumental is strong, detailed enough to allow a rapper kick a story. From topics to God, science of behavior, and revolution, KRS-One goes back to his Post-Criminal Minded BDP roots.

7. Hold

A mean, keyboard sample, KRS-One slowly raps about making ends meet by robbing. The song’s purpose is to tell a story, this ain’t for the clubs, or pop charts, you can tell there is a message behind this song. Through the story KRS-One robs a liquor store, earning 40 dollars, but being caught in the act by police, and finally ending up in the slammer. This song goes strong with out having a real rhyme scheme. It may not be overall pleasing to one’s ears, but the knowledge being said by KRS-One is simply amazing
Every line of the song ends with whole, hold, or hole.

8. Wannabemceez

A boom bap sound, very comparing to Rappaz R.N. Dainja, the instrumental is solid, not to booming as the opening track, or too mellow as Hold, but again, solid. KRS-One raps about the MC’s who can’t MC because they are not MCs. With battle raps, KRS-One makes sure to distinguish himself from everyone else

10. Represent the Real Hip Hop

ft. Das EFX
Das EFX talks about running the underground scene. A Showbiz laced joint, KRS-One tries his best to catch up with seemingly effortless performance by Das EFX. Both Das and Kris represent Hip Hop with battle rhymes, flow, and Hip Hop spirit.

10. The Truth

KRS-One tells the listener to look into yourself and not a scripture. This looks like he’s back into his Edutainment roots. KRS-One speaks on Eve and Adam repopulating the world, when there only two people to do that (I asked myself that a few times). KRS-One begs for the truth, its a good song to listen to if you’re asking yourself questions on something you may believe in
“If Jesus Christ, was shot in the head with no respect
We’d all have little gold guns around our neck”

11. Build Ya Skillz

A dark, grimy instrumental produced by Diamond D of the DITC crew, KRS-One brings it with his battle rhymes again.

12. Out for Fame

A dark, conflicted instrumental done by KRS-One himself. He raps about something not done by many Hip Hop rappers, spitting on how graffiti is illegal, unlike its music which has been earning millions of dollars.

13. Squash All Beef

KRS-One speaks on the violent beefs of Hip Hop culture, his lyrics precluding 2Pac’s and Biggie’s death. He recites the lines from Kool Moe Dee of Self Destruction
“I never ever ran from the Ku Klux Klan
And I shouldn’t have to run from a black man”

14. Health, Wealth, Self

The beat can be annoying, but KRS-One’s knowledge slanders itself on the track. He talks on Hip Hop culture, and being a true MC in the culture. KRS-One could of used a better beat selection.
“Even the records of platinum artists, that used to rip shop
can be bought, for a quarter at the thrift shop”

Overall Rating (Outro)

At time KRS-One’s beat selection is wholly great, or failed, but he has his highlights (Rappaz RN Dainja, Hold). If KRS-One would of use a stronger, more solid beat selection towards the end, it would allow him to shine lyrically, and overall be a better record to listen to.


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