Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
J. Williams | Riverside, CA | 04/24/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Forget skin color, black or white. It really doesn't matter, you can be tight or wack regardless of what race you are. This is a good album, actually it's great. E.C. puts it down. If they ever have an offical book of Hip-Hop, this album should be mentioned somewhere in it. I was cleaning my room today and ran across this album, stashed away. I remember when I bought it, how much I loved it. E.C. isn't the tightest lyricist out. He doesn't spit complex mind numbing lyrics. He is an emcee, and what he does best, is take it back to the old school. While his lyrics might be pretty simple on the surface, his love for Hip-Hop is evident through out this album. There is absolutly no commerical BS here. No dance [moves], less you count the Breaking joint. The production is pretty stripped down, but it add's flavor, and will have your head nodding. And, it won't take away from the lyrics. This beats are vintage, very grimy and basic, I love it. As for his presence on the the mic, E.C. shines. As I was saying, what he lacks in complexity, he more then makes up for with an extremely solid flow, and dope lyrics. He comes from all angles with metaphores and punchlines. There are only a few concept tracks to be found here. "Mating Ritual" will have most thinking of Common's stellar "I Use To Love Her" ok, the concept might be a straight bite. But, E.C. re-works it enough to keep it interesting. He breaks down his love for Hip-Hop, using the metaphore that it's his "Woman" and that he wants to mate with her. "What You Be About?" dips into the gang situation in the Chi. It has samples from various gang members biggin' up their set. I'm not a real big fan of "G" stuff, but this song has a really tight beat. And it's not E.C. braggin' about being a Gangsta. It's more, just a look into the street life in Chi. As far as guest apperances go, there are a few real gems. I am a huge fan of posse cuts that have emcees killin the mic and passing it around. All of his boys posses serious skills when it comes to rippin' the mic. There's not a whole lot to not like on this album. Some may get bored with the simple production. Others might tire of the verses, which are mostly battle orinitated. But, fans of true Hip-Hop will find this album to be bordering on classic. This, is coming from a kid who has been a die hard Hip-Hop head for 20 years. I can't speak on any of his newer releases, but this one is a must buy. It's probably out of print, but if you ever happen to run across it, go yourself a favor and pick it up. Chi-Town has flavor!!!"
Classic b-boy album
S. Castro | Chicago, IL USA | 12/05/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you're into true hip-hop then this album wont fail to disappoint. E.C. has been a pioneer in Chicago hip-hop. Illa, being his second release, instantly became a Chicago classic. Great rhymes with great beats. This album should be in every b-boy's collection."