Throwback Thursdays Vol 37

Eric B and Rakim are a bit like my mother. I respect the work they did, the blueprints they laid for me, but I don’t fancy them. You might, but I just don’t.

They personified innovation and pushed the boundaries of hip-hop with Eric B’s soul-sample infused backdrops and Rakim’s internal rhyming and extensive, creative metaphors. They influenced not only artists to come, but even artists before such as Run DMC and KRS-One who became mesmerized by Rakim’s inventive rhyme-scheme. DJ Premier may have held high the torch for hip-hop production, but Eric B gave it to him in the first place.

With that last metaphor in mind, I therefore don’t think it’s unreasonable to say that other producers have since improved those original, important foundations and taken the genre onto the next level. And that, is why I just can’t fancy them. (And I don’t fancy my mother because that’s just plain wrong – No matter where you’re from).

With all that said, I love this song.

After whirlwind success with their rushed and accidental debut, Paid In Full, Eric B and Rakim returned with their sophomore LP: Follow The Leader and the accompanying first single and title track. Following the same formula yet bringing a new, heavier dimension to production, Eric B lays a pulsating bassline and his near-ambient use of sampling creates some eerie atmospherics. Rakim tackles the mic with evident hunger and demonstrates his lyrical prowess taking the listener through a metaphorical medley of complexity! Sometimes I’ve been known to get headaches trying to comprehend some of Rakim’s wisdom.

The visuals have that Golden-Age typicality about them, in-tact with turntables and serious ice, yet a ferocious insight into New York’s post 1900 mafia scene climaxing with the two parties face to face about to engage in a shootout.

Eric B & Rakim – Follow The Leader

Murray’s BDK Rating:ger

Up Next Week…

One of the East’s finest supergroups has been on repeat for several days now so next week I will have drilled down the TT to pick from their video-less back catalogue.

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