Monday, December 22, 2008

Group Home - Livin' Proof (1995)

As if the fact that this record is produced by goddamn DJ Premier weren't enough, the fact that the first non-intro song starts off with a sample of Nasty Nas declaring that he excels, then prevails* should give you a pretty good idea about what is going on here.

Premier is the unquestionable star here. Lil' Dap and Melachi the Nutcracker are certainly capable tale-weavers as they rap of inner city life with both the emotion and the charisma that was so prevalent in the early 90s New York hip-hop scene. It's hard to focus on the lyrical delivery here, though, as Premier paints cold cold warm cold synesthesic beats onto your consciousness. We're not dealing with melodies here, but rather, a sparse, echoing percussive structure filled in with the perfect vibration at the perfect time. Trying to discuss this is like looking at a drawing of a hypercube on a computer monitor; there are dimensions here that human intuition cannot quite grasp, and the breast is swelled with wonder.

*Also, note the appalling rudeness of that Human Nature sample.