here's one for all the heads out there that really love the sound of gritty, urban hip hop. and no one did it better than Guru (RIP) and Premier. this record here is the definitive example of New York hip hop. the irony is that both of these guys were originally from somewhere else.
as an engineer, listening to the sounds of the kick and the snare provided by what has to be a dbx 160 is sonically beautiful to me. that sound has such an organic feel to it, add that to the fact that this album is filled with stripped down examples of a unique perspective, and you have what is commonly referred to as a masterpiece. i dont think this record gets the recognition it deserves in that regard.
this record is also the record that really established the Gangstarr sound. there was big leap stylistically from "Step In The Arena" to this, and this is the form by which all future Gangstarr albums and Premier productions are based. consequently, it is also the starting point of many other records to follow, by the scores of producers who rushed to imitate the DJ Premier sound. ironically, it may have been his work on the Lord Finesse records that really made the scratch hook a staple in hip hop rather than his own records. imma look deeper in to that. but regardless, lots of others who have enjoyed success, such as DJ Babu and Alchemist owe this record a debt of gratitude for giving them a musical direction. and to me thats what qualifies a masterpiece for such a title. when it stands as a hallmark, a turning point, a paradigm shift in that field. and in this field of music, NO ONE can offer a rebuttal to the designation awarded by this author for this body of work: MASTERPIECE.
i'll see you in the comments if u disagree...