From the Vault...



© Priority Records


track listing
  • Prelude
  • Real Niggaz Don't Die
  • Niggaz 4 Life
  • Protest
  • Appetite For Destruction
  • Don't Drink That Wine
  • Always Into Somethin'
  • Message To B.A.
  • Real Niggaz
  • To Kill A Hooker
  • One Less B----
  • Findum F---um And Flee
  • Automobile
  • She Swallowed It
  • I'd Rather F--- You
  • Approach To Danger
  • 1-900-2-COMPTON
  • The Days Of Wayback

  • WSVNRadio Archives
    A B C D E F G H I J K L M
    N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

    N.W.A related sites:
    N.W.A Website
    Previous Review: #1324
    Blue Oyster Cult--Secret Treaties
    Next Review: #1326
    Les Paul & His Trio--Crazy Rhythm

    I have a complaint: Most Rap albums are extremely bad. Now, I know I can say that Rap is not one of my favorite sources of music, but I try to extend an open ear and open mind, when it comes to Rap albums that reach #1 on the Billboard Top 200 albums chart. Of these "extremely bad" rap #1 albums, they are normally #1 for only one week. And for good reason: The lyrics are vulgar, with songs about (gang related) violence, sex, and police brutality (just to name a few, which of these 3 are pretty common).

    Of these #1 albums in the Rap genre we have reviewed here, I can honestly say I've enjoyed two: Nas and DMX. (DMX's Flesh Of My Flesh Blood Of My Blood received a fairly good review.) Nas has had two albums reviewed: It was Written received a good review, yet his I Am wasn't as highly rated. I also want to mention another Rap artist I have grown accustomed to, the late Tupac Shakur (2Pac). So far one of his albums have been reviewed here, his posthumous Until The End Of Time may not have been an album to truly be excited about, but then again, this album was released after 2Pac's death, consisting of songs that were left on the shelf from his previous albums.

    Then there were other #1 albums of Rap reviewed here, that just didn't get a good "thumbs up": [Tha Dogg Pound's Dogg Food], [Silkk The Shocker's Made Man], and [Young Jeezy's The Inspiration].

    I try to settle with the new music of today, and most of it IS that of Rap music. How these "vulgar" albums reach #1 needs to be explained. Back in the beginning decades of "Rock" music, song topics such as violence (of any kind), sex, and unkind to our police force would have banned from the airwaves. Now it's obvious, songs from these Rap albums would NEVER get regular airplay on Top 40 radio, and if they did, "clean" versions would be heard, instead of the album versions. Take Akon's "I Wanna Love You" is a perfect example. Another example was the 2 Live Crew's "Me So Horny." Take a look at the song titles of EFLI4ZAGGIN... Enough said on this, the ORIGINAL album versions would never see the light of day on Top 40 "clean" radio.

    Now for this week's review: N.W.A (which stands for Niggaz Wit Attitude; oh yeah, I can see the name of what N.W.A stands for getting raves for "regular airplay" ... NOT ... Anyway, N.W.A. consisted of rappers Easy-E, DJ Yella, and Dr. Dre. Ice Cube and Arabian Prince were members, however Ice had already left the group by the time EFIL4ZAGGIN was released, and Arabian Prince left in 1988, replaced by MC Pen. So the current lineup for EFIL4ZAGGIN was Easy-E, DJ Yella, Dr. Dre, and MC Pen. EFIL4ZAGGIN (spelled Niggaz4Life backwards) was the #1 album on the Billboard Top 200 in June, 1991 for (only) one week. N.W.A has been proclaimed as a prominent Rap act, rated highly (obvious) by their critics and fans. Dr. Dre has been known as one the best producers in Rap. Straight Outta Compton was N.W.A's most popular album. (Somewhere in the future, that album will be reviewed here, hopefully reviewed better than EFIL4ZAGGIN.)

    As I try and "stomach" my way in listening to this album, there were only two songs I could actually "enjoy" -- "Always Into Somethin'" and the "novelty" track, "Automobile." After listening to this album, I couldn't help but to observe the "true fans" of N.W.A -- by reading their reviews of EFIL4ZAGGIN.

    One such review was found on the Amazon page of EFIL4ZAGGIN. One review explained that EFIL4ZAGGIN was better, equaling, or surpassing the "brilliance" of Straight Outta Compton. This is a statement kind of expected, from those of the "true N.W.A fans."

    One paragraph from the Amazon review is quite interesting:
    I can understand what scares some people away when they hear this album. Tracks like "One Less B*tch" are very disturbing for sensitive listeners, especially for folks who are new to hip-hop, as I was when I first heard the album a few months ago.
    Yes, it is scary that such topics contained on this album ACTUALLY exists.

    Then the reviewer says this, (and I can totally understand...)
    But for "Efil4zaggin"'s apparent lack of lyrical depth, poeticism, or subtlety, there's also a boatload of fresh, if not revolutionary attributes to the album, and if you're open-minded, there's plenty to recommend it.
    I've said this before: For the Rappers who lived the "rough life," it's expected that they write songs from their experiences. Trying to look at it with an open mind is truly understandable. But the nature of the lyrics is just a bit way explicit for the "sensitive listeners and newbees" to Hip-Hop/Rap music.

    Now for a "good nature" to mention: I get a kick on most Rap tracks, where they "sample" other music. Such as the track "Real Niggaz Don't Die" Rare Earth's "I Just Want To Celebrate" is sampled. "I'd Rather F--- You" samples Bootsy Collins' "I'd Rather Be With You." "Findum, F---um & Flee" features a tribute to the Sugarhill Gang's "Rapper's Delight."

    As for the "violence": The "Protest" track refers to a television sketch, of a newscast, where they are on an on-location site of a N.W.A concert, in which "pandemonium" erupts. "To Kill a Hooker" is another sketch, where the "lady of the night" gets captured by a gang, and presumably killed. Speaking of "ladies of the night" -- "One Less B----" mentions the fact of killing prostitutes.

    For the "sex": "She Swallowed It" -- I don't think I need to explain anything here... "I'd Rather F--- You" is another one.. 'Nuff said.

    For the "messages" -- I get it, where the Rappers make their points in the upbringings. The black community socials is on "N*ggaz 4 Life," street philosophy on "Appetite for Destruction." philosophy. The hidden dangers of alcohol (which is a good statement) is on "Don't Drink That Wine."
    Ice Cube had left N.W.A, and their "disputes" are found on tracks such as "Message to B.A." and "Real N*ggaz."

    Rude, Rude, and (did I say) Rude: "1-900-2-Compton" is a "commercial" of a phone service, those who are locked up (perferably in Compton) and no one cares (they used other words for this) to post bail.
    From the Amazon reviewer:
    But for "Efil4zaggin"'s apparent lack of lyrical depth, poeticism, or subtlety, there's also a boatload of fresh, if not revolutionary attributes to the album, and if you're open-minded, there's plenty to recommend it.
    If you consider buying this album, please keep an open mind and know ahead of time that this is NOT "Straight Outta Compton," which isn't necessarily a bad thing. But this album is an entirely different species, and should be accepted as such. If you view it with an eager ear and a primed imagination, you just may find that you'll enjoy the listening experience that much more.
    In summation, forget what you've heard. This album IS worthwhile, and in some ways, is the crowning achievement in NWA's far too brief career.

    Keeping an open mind on this, truer words spoken. But for the nature of it, it's just too "violent."

    UPDATE: October 4, 2012: The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame announced the inductees for 2013 (in alphabetical order) ... Chic, Deep Purple, Heart, Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, Albert King, Kraftwerk, The Meters, N.W.A, Randy Newman, Procol Harum, Public Enemy, Rush, Donna Summer.
    UPDATE #2: Wow. N.W.A is "Rock & Roll" ???

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    Previous Review: #1324
    Blue Oyster Cult--Secret Treaties
    Next Review: #1326
    Les Paul & His Trio--Crazy Rhythm