enjoyed this well enough on first listen but not much leapt out for me to say about it. it’s just a '90s rap album isn’t it, elevated slightly by having a sense of humour. liked it though so will give it another listen
struggling to catch the words/ humour here- will put it down to the muddy production rather than my more likely shot attention span.
none of the tracks massively jumped out as highlights, but enjoyed it as a whole. head nod heavy rhythms. love the jazziness.
I’m enjoying Yaggfu Front a lot. Here I was thinking Rae Sremmurd were the first rap group to opt for playful wordplay in their name at the expense of easy memorability and recitability, but alas Yaggfu blazed that trail way back in the 90s.
- I don’t know if it’s age, the amount of rap i’ve listened to, changing (devolving) attention spans, or what, but I find it hard to take the lyrics in as much. Maybe these guys just aren’t quite as quotable as the aforementioned reference points like Das EFX, Pharcyde, etc, but I’ve listened through a few times and a lot of the raps wash over me. (also reminds me a bit of Freestyle Fellowship in places)
- production however is top notch. I’m a real sucker for the quite niche genre of ‘lyrically dense rappers over very smooth beats’ and Frontline is a gem of that category, maybe my favourite from the album.
- It got me thinking re: importing CDs as discussed above. Gave me a real nostalgia wave. I remember spending almost all of the pocket money I earned doing very basic gardening on a graveyard on import rap CDs that I’d usually find on amazon via reviews, ‘listmania’ or recommended releases. Remember it being such a gamble, quite expensive, and then when the album arrived I knew I was going to stick with it for weeks, even if it was shit (remember spending a summer trying in vain to love Heroz4Hire). In that vein I think this album, like quite a few in this thread, could have been a personal classic if I’d listened to it at the right time in my life. As it is it just works as a lightweight but enjoyable trip back to my favourite era of rap.
Yeah - I think this is fair enough - I don’t really consider this a lost classic, just more of a really good record that went a bit under the radar at the time. I do find that it really benefits from repeat listens though.
I know that judging a record in terms of how good it is ‘as an album’ is not necessarily as applicable to hip-hop LPs as it can be for other genres, but I think the thing I like most about this is how it works as a whole. Find that I’m happy to just leave it play and don’t skip tracks at all. Agree to a point that there are no obvious huge tunes on it (although I think Busted Loop, Slappin’ Suckas Silly and Frontline are all top notch) but I think its the overall vibe as much as anything else that I’m into. Could well be a personal bias on my part though as most of my favorite LPs are from groups, and where the production and the MCs are consistent throughout (some obvious exceptions notwithstanding)
Absolutely nailed it
been footworking to it also
Alright I’m back from vacation and ready to roll. Gonna finish up my re-listen of Wale and talk about that before I talk about YAGGFU Front, which I just got into about five years ago.
given this a couple more spins, you pretty much summed up how I feel about it here
there’s not any real outstanding tracks (or any particularly bad ones either) imo, it’s just an enjoyable hour or so of rap music. If I had to pick a favourite track I’d go with hold 'em back I think
Really enjoying this album.
Am I crazy, but does one of the MCs (I think it’s Spin 4th) sound a bit like Pharoahe Monch on Stress? Flow and that slightly strained voice in places is really reminds of him.
This Wale tape I remember thinking was really fun when it came out, rated it quite highly at the time. But yeah it’s not doing much for me at all, and it’s… not fun. Way too many percussive elements on each track, gets kind of exhausting. Very mid-00s Philly sound, but over the top. Just makes me want to listen to Game Theory or Philadelphia Freeway or w/e. Think this whole project wouldve been a lot better if he shaved off his last verse of every track and cut the run time down dramatically.
The Kramer is still alright by me. The Manipulation beat is cool. I like the Opening Title Sequence and the End Credits is nice. That’s about it for me. This project has dropped completely off my radar and I doubt I’ll re-visit again. Glad it was rec’d tho, been kinda wondering how it would hold up.
Some really good posts on this Yaggfu album. Got this one a few years back. It’s super solid. I hear a lot of Freestyle Fellowship in these guys beyond the more obv native tongues/pharcyde comps, Left Field sounds like an Aceyalone track by way of De La production. Hold Em Back sounds like an amped up version of FF’s Hot Potato.
Frontline is my fav on here. Busted Loop and Trooper 101 are a couple more standouts for me. My Dick is so Large! would have been a middle school group anthem if I woulda heard this when it came out. Now it just makes me smirk a bit.
Well, speak of the devil…
Aceyalone - All Balls Don’t Bounce
(the second disc is a reissue add-on - the first side is what I’m recommending)
Where to begin with this… I first heard this not a long time after I’d gone through a huge Tribe / De La phase (that I never fully exited, still geeking off De La b-sides and that Camp Lo demo compilation from last year on a daily basis), and had really come to love rap as an expressionistic art form that could be lyrically dense, crammed with ideas, subtle, heavy, weary, poetic, but also light, humorous, carefree, and populated by artists who had a real knack for creating a world and inviting you in but never letting you feel like you’d ever truly seen their hand. Aceyalone really carried this on for me, and this became one of my favourite rap albums as a teenager, and still holds up to this day for me.
He was such a talented MC that he was basically deconstructing rap, rap tropes, and hip-hop song structure in his music and this was in, what, 1995…? Deconstructing rap before Jay-Z had even released an album, to put it into context. I feel like this is a good follow-on from Yaggfu Front because of the Freestyle Fellowship / Pharcyde comparisons that got thrown around in the discussion, but I’ve had this in my mind since this thread started.
Anyway this is one of the rap albums I love above so many others and I’ve never really gotten sick of it. I feel like great albums conjure up an entire micro-universe to escape into and this definitely does this for me. Probably going to light one up and sit with this in my headphones before I go to bed now
also this is on UK netflix currently and would make a good companion piece to anyone who really enjoys this week’s pick
Cause everywhere you go
I am gonna find you
And every time you flow
I’ll be right behind you
Just to let you know
and constantly remind you
You can never be as dope as I am…
mm yes i love this album. felt like we talked about this (or ace) recently so did some digging and found it in this classic silky thread:
Flow on Anywhere You Go is reminding me a bit of early Common, which is very pleasing to my ears. Per your notes, also reminiscent of Jay on Friend or Foe.
Looking forward to the rest of this album!
Great choice! Have this on CD but haven’t listened in years. Need to have another listen to Yaggfu Front but I’ll get onto this in the next couple of days