Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Pop, Rap & Hip-Hop
Group Home- Livin' Proof
Constant | Vancouver, BC Canada | 10/20/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Group Home's (Melachi Da Nutcracker and Lil Dap) debut album "Livin' Proof" (1995) was an impressive first release. Produced by one of my hip hops most established producers DJ Premier of Gang Starr for MCs that appeared on his projects(Melachi and Dap appear on Daily Operation, Hard to Earn) this album is laced with excellent first class beats to remember. While Melachi and Lil Dap are not great MC's I feel that they hold there own on there first release, though I do agree lyrical content is limited. Singles "Suspended in Time" and "Supa Star" are two of my favourite tracks on the album, I like the later where Group Home goes deep while talking about the streets and giving shoutouts at the end of the track. The title track "Livin Proof" has an insane beat as does the grimey sounding "4 Give My Sins". "Baby Pa" picks up midway and Group Home is smart enough to let the beat do the work. Backed by a dope piano beat, Melachi and Lil Dap's simple rhymes work well on "2 Thousand", 95 is yours 2000 is mine. "Up Against Tha Wall" and "The Realness" close off the album strong. Some people may get bored of the repetitive use of lines like "such a pity that livin in the city is like livin in the times of Frank Nitti", for some reason this appeals to me, both MC's have distinct flows which blend well with Premos beats. "Livin' Proof" is an album I would recommend checking out, a unique and memorable release."
The beats? FIRE. Melachi and Dap? Uhm...
danger ex machina | Philadelphia, PA | 04/22/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Few albums evoke the frustration of Livin' Proof. DJ Premier is at the top of the mountain. Group Home seems incapable of even beginning to scale it. Dap's voice is annoying, to the point of egregiosity (if that's a word). Seriously, the cat should be doing Tiny Toons, not lamely attempting to rip up a Preemo track. Melachi isn't going to leave you dazed with his rhymes either, but he's far from the worst emcee to ever bless a mic. You ever see those corny white kids dressed like ICP in the cipher before school? I rest my case. Although, realistically, will they ever get the chance to take a metaphorical dump on beats as beautiful as these? Preem's loyalty to his friends is admirable. Guru and Big Shug do drop in on "Serious Rap Shhh", instantly making it the best thing here vocally. They also sampled Paul Mooney years before the Chapelle Show made him fashionable to those aforementioned white kids. *sigh* Listen...you *need* this if you have any trace of hip-hop in your blood. This is argueably Premier's best production. Ever. Just try and zone out and ignore the rhymes and you'll enjoy it. If you find yourself in tears that he didn't give these beats to Nas or Jeru, well, that's two of us."
A focused masterpiece
ctrx | 'bout to show you how the EAST COAST rocks... | 08/23/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Group Home's 1995 debut album "Livin' Proof" is a gorgeous and beautiful hip hop album that is certainly very underappreciated. This album teams the MC duo Lil' Dap and Melachi the Nutcracker, two talented and unknown teenage rappers from New York, with the legendary DJ Premier on the mixing boards, arguably the greatest hip hop producer of all time. The result is a truly special and unique masterpiece. The majority of the enjoyment in "Livin' Proof" comes from the production, which is the most diverse and my favorite of his entire career. His sound is very focused, and the theme of "low budget environment" is played very well. Premo's beats sound less polished than on a Gang Starr record, and instead of his usual horns and instrumentals, he often uses heavy, creative sampling, and a simple drumkit and keyboard to make simple, beautiful beats. His music has a very nostalgic feel to it, and this production is experimental without sounding at all futuristic. His music really is capable of evoking a lot of feelings and emotions. Lyrically I am impressed with Dap and Melachi, and I really can't begin to comprehend the three and four star ratings bashing these two rappers. I guess in 1995 people were only used to hearing Guru and Jeru the Damaja over Premier beats, and granted Dap and Melachi are not quite on their level, but they really do a phenomenal job on the mic. Despite their young age, they have a very worldly intelligence, and they speak of life in an often depressed, downcast tone that comes from living in such abject poverty. Despite their tough situations, though, they continue to look forward. "Livin' Proof" is an amazing rap album that is really unlike any other I've heard, and I recommend it highly to all types of music listeners.
The album begins with a 40-second intro that displays why DJ Premier is one of the top producers of all time. With just a piano and drumset, he makes one of the coolest little beats I've ever heard, and it just eases you into the album so well. "Inna City Life" introduces Dap and Melachi, both dropping some raw philosophy gained from years in the ghetto, and Premo's simple, staticky beat is hard and gritty. The beat to "Livin' Proof" is raw but attractive, simple and ear-catching, and Melachi and Dap establish themselves as new young truth-kicking rappers. The chorus samples Wu-Tang and Nas in Premo's signature two-bar fashion. "Serious Rap S..." has an electronic, ultra-funky beat that will make your head bob instantly, the raps show great flow. A highlight of the disc is "Suspended in Time," a very nostalgically and thoughtfully produced track with verses to match. "Sacrifice" has cool guitars on the production, and harder raps than usual. "Up Against tha Wall (Low Budget Mix)" has bouncy vibes and my favorite lyrics on the album, expressing the depressed and pessimistic view of inner city life. "4 Give My Sins" has some muted horns and a simple beat, with introspective lyrics. Premo steals the show on "Baby Pa," making not one but two completely dope beats on this track. I love "2 Thousand," with its winding deep piano and great chorus ("95 is yours, 2000 is mine, and we walkin' through the ghetto and the feeling is fine..."). It's followed by "Supa Star," another classic single. My favorite song on the whole album is "Up Against tha Wall (Getaway Car Mix)." It's another mix to the song earlier on the album, but Premo's slower, simple piano lined-beat is absolutely perfect, and he engineers a nice chorus for this mix. The album ends with the tough song "Tha Realness."
"Livin' Proof" is an album so exceptional and musical that I don't think you'd have to be a rap fan to enjoy it. In my mind, it showed the world that the legendary Premier didn't need Guru or Jeru to make an awesome record, and I think this is maybe his greatest musical accomplishment. It is really unlike a Gang Starr album in every way, but Gang Starr fans will probably enjoy it immeasurably as well. I could not praise or recommend "Livin' Proof" any higher, this is really a one-of-a-kind type of album."