Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Compton's Most Wanted|
Genres: Pop, Rap & Hip-Hop
I tried hard to love this album...
Mike J | Central Coast, CA United States | 04/07/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"but I was really disappointed with it when it came out. Being a huge fan of It's A Compton Thang, I immediately went out and purchased Straight Checkn 'Em. I was expecting more of the same: original hardcore and humourous lyrics, great beats, and CMW's unique style. What I got was a mixed bag with flashes of brilliance but mostly uninspired songs.
After a pointless intro, the album starts off nicely with "They Still Gafflin". Good hardcore ruff stuff I'd come to expect from CMW. The undisputed classic "Growin' Up in the Hood" from the Boyz In The Hood soundtrack pops up next. If you have somehow managed to miss this track in your travels, just know that this was the song that made CMW's career. It is the beginning of their recognition outside of California and easily one of the most influential songs in all Gangsta rapdom. Unfortunately, after this track the album starts to slip.
Part of the strength of Compton Thang was the creative samples and loops that Unknown had hooked up. For most of the remainder of Checkn 'Em, beats appeared that had been used only a year or two before by greats like Big Daddy Kane (see "Straight Checkn 'Em") and others. I got the feeling that this album may have been done as some sort of rush job to keep up with the tidal wave that "Growin' Up in the Hood" had created. Let it suffice to say that the beats sound very formulaic and few risks were taken with production.
That doesn't mean that there are not some gems here. To this day I find "I Don't Dance" a hysterical dedication to those of us that were and are too cool to do the running man. A glimmer of the old CMW production brilliance is here when Eiht becomes exasperated when a club DJ "threw on the 'Ice Ice Baby'". The notorious sample of "Under Pressure" by Queen pops up momentarily and Eiht deadpans that "that !*%? don't faze me". The DJ work on the hook is also brilliant: Zapp "I can make you dance" followed by LL Cool J "I don't think so". Also, despite it's poor sound quality, it is difficult not to be impressed by the ambition of "Driveby Miss Daisy" where Eiht successfully paints a vivid lyrical motion picture of a gangster tale gone wrong.
A final disappointment was a decided lack of Chill aka Tha Chill aka Tha Chill M.C. I know that Chill had run into some legal trouble between "Growin' Up in the Hood" and Checkn' Em and that he eventually did a bid for whatever it was, (hence his complete disappearance from the music scene until '97 or '98). If I had to guess, I'd say he had a lot of legal battles and other troubles on his mind while the rest of CMW must have been struggling to focus on this album.
While it is far from garbage, this album remains to me as a blemish on the recording career of CMW. Despite my disappointment, it remains an album worth checking out as it is better than a lot of other garbage out there today and back then as well. I consider it a slight misstep before the greatness to come on the follow-up classic Music To Driveby.
CLASSIC HARDCORE GANGSTA RAP AT IT'S BEST !!!
joseph b. | SAINT PETERSBURG, FL USA | 01/06/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I HAVE GOT TO ADMIT IT. A LOT OF PEOPLE WHO WHERE LISTENING TO GANGSTA RAP BACK IN THE DAY SLEPT ON THIS ALBUM. HELL, I DIDN'T BUY IT UNTIL 1994. IT CAME OUT IN 1991. BUT AS I REMEMBER THE ONLY SONG I EVER HEARD WHEN IT FIRST CAME OUT WAS "GROWING UP IN THE HOOD". WHICH WAS FEATURED ON THE SOUNDTRACK TO THE MOVIE "BOYZ IN THE HOOD". MAN IF I KNEW THAT THE WHOLE ALBUM WAS THAT GOOD WHEN I FINALLY BOUGHT IT IN 1994. I WOULD HAVE BOUGHT IT IN 1991, WHEN IT WAS FIRST RELEASED. COMPTON'S MOST WANTED ORIGINALLY HAD FOUR MEMBERS. MC EIHT,MC CHILL,DJ MIKE T, AND ANOTHER GUY NAMED UNKNOWN. BUT THE ONLY PEOPLE YOU HEAR ON THIS ALBUM IS MC EIHT AN DJ MIKE T. MC CHILL ONLY RAPS ON ONE SONG AND THAT'S "GROWING UP IN THE HOOD". I BELIEVE UNKNOWN IS THE GUY WHO MADE UP MOST OF THE BEATS. BOY,DID HE EVER DO A GOOD JOB. THIS ALBUM HAS SOME OF THE TIGHTEST AND MOST HAUNTING BEATS I'VE EVER HEARD. BUT IT'S MY MAN MC EIHT WHO GET'S ALL THE GLORY WITH HIS TRADEMARK CALL "JEAH". IF YOU LIKE HARD ASS BEATS AND HARD ASS RHYMES. YOU LOVE THIS CD. THERE ARE NO WEAK MOMENTS ON THIS CD.MY FAVORITE SONG IS "DEF WISH". A DISS SONG TO DJ QUIK. ALL THE OTHER SONGS ARE ALSO TOP NOTCH. INCLUDING "I DON'T DANCE" "RAISED IN COMPTON" AND "CAN I KILL IT" . THE LATTER SAMPLES THE SONG "LOVE T.K.O." BY TEDDY PENDERGRASS. COME TO THINK OF IT , ALMOST ALL OF THE BEATS ON THIS ALBUM ARE SAMPLES. THAT'S HOW THE RAP GAME WAS BACK IN 1991.EVERYBODY WAS SAMPLING BEATS FROM OLD RECORDS.BUT C.M.W. DOES'NT USE A LOT OF JAMES BROWN AND PARLIAMENT. LIKE MOST RAPPERS BACK IN THOSE DAYS WHERE DOING.IF YOU LIKE OTHER CLASSIC WEST COAST HARDCORE RAPPERS SUCH AS N.W.A , ICE-T AND SPICE-1. YOU'LL LOVE MC EIHT AND COMPTON'S MOST WANTED. WHAT REALLY MADE ME GO BUY THIS CD THREE YEARS AFTER IT'S RELEASE WAS THE ALBUM THAT THEY RELEASED AFTER THIS "MUSIC TO DRIVEBY".I BOUGHT THAT ONE AND I WAS CURIOUS ABOUT HOW THE PREVIOUS ALBUM SOUNDED.AS THE YEARS PASSED "STRAIGHT CHECK'EN EM" HAS WENT ON TO BECOME ONE OF MY ALL TIME FAVORITE RAP ALBUMS.MAN, I CAN LISTEN TO THIS CD ALL DAY WITHOUT EVER GETTING TIRED OF HEARING IT. CHECK IT OUT. DON'T SLEEP."
I STARTED TO GROW IN TO IT
Sherance M. Brothers | 06/25/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I DID NOT LIKE THIS ALbUM WHEN I FIRST GOT IT,bUT
I LUV IT NOW,MIKE T FUNKY TRACC IZ DA HARDEST LOC."