Thursday, January 26, 2017

Reese & Bigalow - Unfinished Business

Reese & Bigalow - Unfinished Business
Reese & Bigalow is a duo that represents from the infamous Wood Street in Jackson, MS. They first started out in the early nineties as members of The Renegades. The group was one of the first acts to represent for the city of Jackson and eventually paved the way for many other artists, Reese and Bigalow left the group after their initial release and formed their duet while Lon Trigga of The Renegades went on to form the notorious, Wood Street Playaz. Unfinished Business is their second album and it was released in 2000 on Lil Mann's Records. Production is equally split between Mike B, Gutta Boy and JB Money. The beats are Southern in composure and while most of them are fairly enjoyable, there are some that lack a bit of energy and edginess. The three producers do a decent job at constructing the rhythms but it's their simple approach at times that takes a hit. Lyrically, the album is quite good. Both, Reese and Bigalow are pretty adequate on the microphone and their verbal chemistry is also reasonably strong. Their rhymes display constant word play and are also delivered at a fair rate. Guest appearances are courtesy of 20-2-Life, PSK-13, South Park Mexican, Ska-Face Al Capone, Bone Crusher, Crooked Lettaz, King Goldi, Poetic Preachaz, Dez, J2, Frank Da Macka and Fe-Fe. The album closes out with a commendable total of sixteen tracks and the rock solid guest list makes it that much harder to deny. Overall it's a noble release that has a good amount of highs instead of the lows. The only knock on it is the basic production but even with that blemish the album manages to sustain itself. Reese & Bigalow went on to release one more album in 2002 before slowly fading out of the music industry. The groups' unlucky demise was brought by the hands of the Atlanta based rapper known as Bone Crusher. Bone, who was signed to Jermaine Dupri's label known as So So Def, was once a loyal friend who quickly turned foe over ownership of a single track. The song in question is called "Neva Sked" and it comes from Reese & Bigalow's 2002 release known as, "Playa Music." The track featured a verse from Bone Crusher and Killer Mike. It was produced by Avery Johnson and was purchased by Reese & Bigalow for their new album. The exact same song was released by Bone Crusher for his debut album in the year 2003 and the only major difference was the verses of Reese & Bigalow were removed and replaced with a verse from T.I. The title was also changed to "Never Scared." Bone Crusher's version of the song ended up being a chart topping hit and eventually propelled him into the limelight. Reese & Bigalow did file a law suit against Bone Crusher over copyright infringement but they never got the recognition or the praise for the original song. They were most likely paid off by the deep pockets of Jermaine Dupri and were supposedly told to keep their mouths shut about the whole issue. It's unfortunate what happened to Reese & Bigalow but then again it just goes to show how corrupt some of these major labels are and how how cruel this music industry can be at times.

Deadly Verses
Unfinished Business ft. Ska-Face Al Capone & PSK-13

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 secrets. 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. The skillful, David "D-Funk" Faulk programs all the necessary equipment with Ice Mike, who is also 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 quick pace and a strong vocabulary which truly makes him a standout on the microphone. The album signs off with a decent total of twelve tracks with multiple shots being 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 claimed 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 carrying an AK-47, opened fire on the exterior of his trailer home. 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.