Saturday, January 14, 2017

Sporty T - Chromed Out

Terence Vine, better known as Sporty T, was an artist who represented the deadly bayous of New Orleans, LA. Most known for his whimsical flow as well as his infamous war on wax against Cash Money Records, Sporty first started out in 1986, as a member of the Ninja Crew with Gregory D and DJ Baby T. After their short lived success, he would end up pursuing the solo route and would go on to become one of New Orleans' best kept secret. Chromed Out is his fourth album and it was released in 1997 on Ruff Era Records. Production, as with most of his releases is handled by his right hand man, the masterful T-Bone with the skillful, David "D-Funk" Faulk programming all the necessary equipment. Also the legendary Ice Mike is credited for one of the tracks as well. The rhythms are crafted from the ground up and are thoroughly entertaining. They contain various instruments and carry that typical N.O. sound. A type of sound that is best exemplified through blaring horns, dark synths, funky bass, piercing bells and finished off with a strict cadence of drums. This concoction serves as the foundation for the record and it certainly does not disappoint. Sporty T is a top caliber lyricist and takes full advantage of the solid production. His delivery is rapid and full of word play. His tone is quite rough and when combined with his pace and a strong vocabulary, truly makes him a standout on the microphone. The album signs off with a decent total of twelve tracks with multiple shots fired at Cash Money Records and the Hot Boy$. It's hard to pin point how the feud began between the two parties. Some say it was just a misunderstanding on Sporty's behalf while others have said it was Cash Money Records who drew first blood. Whatever the case may be, it was very clear that both sides meant business and it was more than just some rap. Sporty T was murdered in 2008 while he slept in his home. An unknown gunmen who was toting an AK-47, opened fire on the exterior of his trailer. Paramedics found Sporty T's wounded body inside on his bed and pronounced him dead at the scene. In the end, the city of New Orleans lost a man who is considered by many to be a pioneer for the city's Rap and Hip Hop scene. A local legend with a timeless catalog of music, who always gave his best when inside the recording booth. Rest in peace to the ambitious, Sporty T.

Deadly Verses
Dope Tito

The Aftermath


Album Notes
* Sporty T is also a member of the Wet Boys.
* Wet Boys was a group created to counter the Hot Boy$.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

J-Tweezy - Da Ghetto Mouth Piece Of Da South - Compilation Vol 1

Joshua James Bursh, better known as J-Tweezy, is a multi-talented DJ from the renowned streets of Baton Rouge, LA. He was most known for his hit late night radio shows throughout South Texas and Southern Louisiana. His shows would often shed light on underground and upcoming artists as well as pay homage to the premiere ones. He is a prolific DJ/Radio Personality and an accomplished producer. Da Ghetto Mouth Piece Of Da South is a compilation that he released on his own label, Off Da Heezy Entertainment in 2001. About half of the production is handled by J-Tweezy while the other half is credited to his accomplices such as Steve Below, L.A. Dre, DJ Tron, Doobie Smoov, Dr. J, Ryal, TruDawg, DJ New Orleans, Big Los, J.D. and Winston. The rhythms are strictly Southern in nature and while most are originally crafted, there are some that are sample assisted. The overall sound is kept at a jubilant level but there are some tracks that hit a bit harder than others. Everything from groovy guitars to space age horns and even a solid percussion set is used. This simple yet effective, type of production pattern is the backbone for the record and it certainly gives off an easy going and relaxed atmosphere. Lyrically, the album is pretty versatile due to the star studded guest list. The features are courtesy of C-Loc, Lil' Boosie, Max Minelli, Thug Addict, Lil' jon, E.S.G., Yungstar, Tyte Eyez, D-Gotti, D-Reck, X-Con, The Ill Relatives, Atari, Peep Skills, Ms. Peaches, Product, Tank, Dirty, Lord Trauma, Chyna White, Mutt, Trelli Trelle, Playboy and Gloria Velez. A long list of supplemental artists but a must have for any compilation to be somewhat successful in the South. Overall, this is a competent release and one that can keep itself afloat due to its' lengthy content. J-Tweezy provided a quality product through determination and sheer effort. It's a compilation that deserves a spin in the playlists or a spot in the archives for both the fans and the collectors of Southern Rap.

Deadly Verses
So High ft. E.S.G. & Yungstar


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Big Boss - Respect Due

Big Boss was a full time producer and a part time rapper from the notorious boulevards of Houston, TX. Considered by many to be a pioneer for the Hip Hop scene in Texas, Big Boss first started off with his cousin, Original E, in the group called, O.G. Style. Together, they released their highly desirable debut album in 1991, known as "I Know How To Play 'Em," on Rap-A-Lot Records. The two had some moderate success before deciding to part ways. Original E kept the O.G. Style name and recorded under that moniker while Big Boss formed the infamous group, 4 Deep with his brother Koo Rod and Klas' One. Respect Due is his debut solo album and it was released in 2000 on Power Move Music. Production is solely handled by Big Boss himself, and he certainly does not disappoint. Known for providing some hard hitting bass lines and intoxicating hooks, he uses his classic approach and melodic methods to construct the rhythms. The beats are hard, edgy, groovy and funky, all at the same time. His production skills are deadly and they definitely show his veteran and accomplished status in the music industry. Big Boss raps on a few tracks but mostly, he lets his associates take full control of the microphone. Lyrically, the album is quite strong. The artists are used precisely on a given track and they certainly give it their all. Their rhymes compliment the production pattern well and the features don't seem out of place. Guest spots are courtesy of 4 Deep, The Funky Products, South Park Mexican, Da BBC, Lil Daddy, The Waterheadz, Popcycle, Taija and Pancho Villa of Lifestyl. The record signs off with a total of fourteen polished tracks with varying subjects. Overall, it's an impressive work of art by a renowned legend. Not enough can be said about his proficient prowess or his valuable importance in the underground scene from the South. Sadly, Big Boss passed away in 2006 due to kidney failure. He was working on the reunion album for his group, 4 Deep. Rest in peace, to one of the best that ever represented for Houston, Texas.

Deadly Verses
My Playaz ft. Da BBC

Sometimes I Wonder ft. Taija

Album Notes
* R.I.P to the masterful, Eric "O.G. Style" Woods.
* Original E, passed away two years later in 2008.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

H.$.E - The Re-Score

H.$.E, which stands for Hustlaz $tackin' Endz, is a collective that hails from the southside of Houston, TX. The original group consisted of Hump, Lil' Flip, A.P. and Yung Redd. Also, Lil' Flip left the group after their initial release due to his own solo success and A.P. was later replaced with Lil' Ron. The group and all its' individual artists were also signed under Hump's own independent label known as, Sucka Free Records. Hump started the label in the late nineties and had a good run with H.$.E. and Lil' Flip as the label's core artists. The Re-Score is H.$.E.'s second release and it was put out in 2004 on Sucka Free Records. It's not an official album since it was just released to create a buzz for Yung Redd and Lil' Ron's upcoming album, "The Paper Route." Production on this record is invalid due to most, if not all, the beats are borrowed from other premier artists. The album is at a decent level lyrically. The songs are mostly freestyles with one or two real tracks sprinkled in between. Yung Redd and Lil' Ron are the only ones present with a slew of handsome guest features from Bun B, Paul Wall, Z-Ro, Trae, Twista, David Banner, Grit Boys, Big Shasta, Twisted Black, Yung Ro, A.B.N., Lil' Head and Yung Wun. The album closes out with a grand total of twenty tracks with only a handful of them being entertaining. As mentioned above, the release is in no way official in form or content. It was merely an underground release which was meant to supplement fans till the release of "The Paper Route." Hump just slapped the H.$.E. name on it in hopes of moving a few more units. Even though the release is obscure in nature, it just does not have anything alluring for the listener to look forward to.

Album Notes
* The record was also released with an alternative cover.

Friday, December 30, 2016

The Legion - Welcome To Texas

The Legion is a collective that hails from the ruthless streets of Dallas, TX. The group consists of Boom Man, Dexterous, Lil' Mo, and Mr. Lex. They consider themselves as lyrical outlaws and musical outcasts in this watered down music industry. Welcome To Texas is their debut album and it was released in 2000 on Stretched Out Records. Production is solely handled by Boom Man and he does an admirable job on the rhythms. The beats mostly stay uptempo and are quite energetic in composure. Various notes are used to achieve the final result which is both, eclectic and diverse in nature. The tracks are also catered for easy listening and they can accustom to the listener with their bright composure. Lyrics, is where the album really takes off. The four members are nothing less than fascinating upon the microphone. Their flows are rapid and are delivered with swiftness and clarity. Also to note, is the chemistry that the quartet has and how efficiently it is exposed on each and every track. Rhyme schemes are Southern in construction and word play is given the utmost authority. This then gives their songs a colorful and an unpredictable essence which keeps the listener commendably satisfied. Featuring on the album is the local crew known as, C.O.D. The record closes out with an ample total of fifteen solid tracks. Their subject matter is not limited to one category and is versatile enough to appeal to the masses. Overall, this is a very strong release by the group but one that came just a little too early in publication. In the year 2000, a new Southern sound was emerging from the South and was starting to replace the older, Texas Funk. While the new sound was gaining popularity in the underground, it didn't quite catch on to the mainstreams until the mid 2000's. Now, had this record been released in 2004 or late 2005, it could have done wonders for the group. In the end, it just goes to show how far ahead these guys were in their time. Everything from their sound to their lyrics and even their visions, were all progressing towards the right trend. The very trend that exploded on to the music scene just a few years later and was mainly led by artists from the great state of Texas. Sadly, by that time, The Legion had already came and left without even making a whisper.

Deadly Verses
Everything We Drop

196 Clique - No Love Part 1

196 Clique is a collective that represents from the Northern ends of Memphis, TN. The group consists of Killer B, Pimp CC, Ms. Vicious, Mr. Lil' E and Pimp Lil' D. They initially debuted on the scene in 1996 with their hardcore release called, "Crucifixes." No Love Part 1, is their sophomore effort and it was released in 1999 on Golden Entertainment. Production duties are split between Pimp Lil' D, Mr. Lil' E and Pimp CC. Together, they set a dark and grim atmosphere for the rhythms. The beats exemplify that typical Memphis underground sound. In most cases, a hard edged sample is endlessly looped which is then accompanied by some profound bass lines and topped off with some heavy drums. There are some tracks that are a bit smooth and laid back but the rest strictly stick to their horror core roots. Lyrics are also of a ghastly nature. The members are all fluent in their tongue twisting styles and they can easily display their art with cruelty. Eerie and horrid rhyme schemes are used thoroughly and a good amount attention is given to word play. The songs are composed very bluntly and to the point. There are no special vocal strategies or any alluring efforts involved. Also, some of the hooks and choruses could use some work too. Aside from those two blemishes, the record is pretty solid to say the least. Guest features are made by two of the M-Town greats, Playa Fly and Ska-Face Al Kapone. Overall, it's a decent record and one that can sustain itself only in the underground due to the vile and harsh nature of the core contents.

Deadly Verses
Don't Test My Pimpin


Monday, December 26, 2016

II Nations - Trapped In The System

II Nations is a duo that represents from the wild neighborhood of South Park in Houston, TX. It consists of Showtyme and K-Swift. One might remember Showtyme due to his later prominence in the H-Town rap scene but this release will remind the listeners of is his raw and humble beginnings. Trapped In The System is their debut album and it was released in 1994 on Suspect Records. Production is handled by the masterful John Swift, while being assisted by Don Honoree and Byron Hordge. The beats are a classic example of mid nineties Texas funk. Not only are the groovy on the ears but are also hard and edgy in composure. They display various construction properties such as sampling, scratching, and most importantly, proper mixing. Lyrics are also of worthy of praise. The two members bring upon a diverse force upon the microphone. For example, Showtyme is more blunt and strikes the listener with his powerful voice meanwhile K-Swift is a bit laid back in demeanor and his smooth delivery and overall tone is easy going. Also, the two rappers have great chemistry together and can feed off of each other with ease. Guest appearances are made by Grimm, Papa Reu, Endo, Pistol Grip, Gangsta Profile and Broken English. All in all, this was a decent release that closes out with eleven tracks. Subject matter progresses into various categories such as, the communal struggle, the overwhelming poverty and lastly, the judicial injustice. Overall, it's a strong release by the duo. It has plenty of quality content and timeless material. Even with some of these advantages, the release could not garner any type of meaningful attention. The duo ended up disappearing for a while before Showtyme reemerged in the late nineties and is still present in the music industry today. As for K-Swift, things were not so fortunate, aside from a couple guest spots, he ended up leaving the music scene altogether. In any way, what's important is what they accomplished together and that happens to be a fine work art, that not only oozes style but also gives a good sense of realism.

Deadly Verses
Sit Back Relax


Album Notes
* A big thanks goes out to save_undaground and syko187 for providing this one.
* Since this is a tape only release some sound quality issues are to be expected.