audio review : Edutainment ( album ) … Boogie Down Productions

audio review : Edutainment ( album ) ... Boogie Down Productions

Boogie Down Productions isn’t about making you dance. It’s about providing knowledge, the kind that centers around uplifting the black race. It’s stuff you must learn, no matter what color you are, but you won’t learn about it in that boring history class with the old white teacher, so it’s up to KRS-One; a “Teacha” in his own right; to put the equivalent of a book in your head. He does that with rap music, which, as the title cleverly suggests, educates and entertains.

The album is enveloped around a college lecture. “Black people have created every music you hear out here in the street today,” he claims. Even if you don’t subscribe to his ideology, which would border racism itself if not for a song that explains he’s not just a “black man speaking out of ignorance”, you can’t deny the quality of the music. The rhymes are thoughtful and the beats; the Breath Control sequel, a reggae joint, being the best among them; are funky-fresh all the way.

my rating = 4 of 5

1990

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audio review : 7 Dee Jays ( song ) … KRS-One + Harmony + Heather B + Ms Melodie + Jamalski ( featuring D-Nice )

“It takes seven DJs to control a sound.” But it takes only six MCs to hold it down. This is perhaps the first and only true Boogie Down Productions song in the sense that it features vocals from every member. Then again, while the absence of Scott La Rock is excused; he died in 1987; Kenny Parker and D-Square, the latter of whom seems to have been in the studio during the recording process, are (also) represented via shoutout only.

An organized structure; equal chorus intervals and equal verse time; would make the song even better than it is. Though most of the lyrics were apparently composed in advance, it comes across as a freestyle rap session, especially when KRS-One and Jamalski do a reggae takeover near the end. The best part is the beat, which itself bounces about like a reggae groove. This song should’ve been officially included on the Edutainment album.

my rating = 4 of 5

1990

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audio review : The BDP Album ( album ) … KRS-One

The BDP Album

The title makes no sense. Even if it were Another BDP Album, that wouldn’t be the case unless the BDP posse is down to just KRS-One and Kenny Parker, which I guess wouldn’t come as a surprise considering the fact that, according to 1992’s Sex And Violence, the group was down to just those two members and Willie D. But if that’s the case, why not credit Boogie Down Productions as the artists of this album and give it a different title?

Then again, what does it matter? Albums by Boogie Down Productions were KRS-One solo albums anyway. The difference now is that, while his trademark rap skills are still on-point; the veteran MC rarely disappoints; his albums are no longer “fresh”… for 2012, 2011 or any other year within the past decade or so. And this, an amateurish set that comes across as a Kenny Parker mixtape of KRS-One demo songs, is easily one of his worst.

my rating = 2 of 5

2012

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