KRS-One released his first solo album “Return of the Boom Bap” on September 28, 1993. The album was produced by DJ Premier, Kid Capri, Showbiz and KRS-One himself. Technically it was his sixth album, but who is counting?
The album consists of 14 dope tracks, 2 of which were already previously released. “Black Cop” was released off the “CB4 Sountrack” and “The P Is Still Free” was off the “Menace II Society Sountrack“.
The album starts off with a bang, with the DJ Premier track “KRS-One Attacks” where DJ Premier does a mix of classic KRS-One tracks over a nice dope beat! As soon as the mix is over we get the dope “Outta Here” also produced by DJ Premier. Over a heavy bass groove, KRS-One spits about his teenage years and how he met the late Scott La Rock in a group home. If you want to know the history of how BDP came to fruition, this is the song for you!
After livin’ on the streets alone
Some years went by, I signed myself into a group home
I used to watch the show “I Dream of Jeannie”
And dreamt about “When will I be large like Whodini?”
But I was messin’ with graffiti on the subway
And gettin’ chased by the cops almost everyday
I knew it had to bea better way see
So I would go to my room, blast RUN DMC
Around 1984 I left the group home, again alone
Still dreamin’ about the microphone
Gimme a chance man, I know I can rock it
But I had to worry about puttin’ money in my pocket
So when I reached the shelter I met my helper DJ Scott La Rock
And we both loved hip-hop
I was takin’ suckas out in the shelter system
Yeah there was rappers in the shelter but I had to diss ’em
But all along, my vision was never lost
I kept seeing all these rap groups fallin’ off
On “Mortal Thought” Premier takes the drum beat of “Outside Love” by Brethren plus the bass groove from “Stretching” by Art Blackey to bring one of the dopest tracks on the album. Premier cuts up the “My posse from the Bronx is thick!” and it get’s you hyped up!
Of course yeah I’m the most brilliant recording artist in your life
Never have to repeat a rhyme style twice, precise
In a lyrical drought like water to your lips oh yes my lyrics will suffice
I’m nice, like beans and rice, I am delicious
Who’s the freshest lyricist on the mic, you don’t want to fuck with KRS is
Lyric for lyric, rhyme for rhyme, style for style I break you like dishes
Either you come fully correct or the lyrics you simply makin’ wishes
We got no time for fake black leaders and dreamers blowin’ wishes
Youse a fraud, I mean a fraud like in fraudulation
I know what it is, the crown of rhyme supremacy you’re tastin’
Premier also brings the noise with the infectious “I Can’t Wake Up” where KRS “dreams about being a blunt and can’t wake up”. The track is blessed with a Jamaican bass line borrowed from Horace Andy’s “Zion Gate“. While KRS dreams he’s a blunt, all different kinds of rappers some him up, for the exception of a couple of mc’s! This is one dope concept track one should not miss.
Get me out of this, somebody wake me up
I’m still on fire and I’m still bein smoked up
Half my body is gone, now they’re comin to my head
Now my head is being pinched by Teddy Ted
A crazy nightmare I got to go
I got to wake up and I’m passed off to Yo-Yo
Yo-Yo gets respect as a lady
She didn’t smoke,she passed me to Showbiz & A.G
A.G. said, “Respect due seen”
He got one big pull and passed me to Smooth B
Smooth B, although he’s talking to Teddy
Took a hit and passed me to Fab 5 Freddy
Freddy said, “Yo! There’s nothing left pop”
Looked at me in my face and passed me to Chubb Rock
Chubb Rock said, “Yo Freddy chill!
If you ever catch me smoking, just kick me in the grill”
To me, the gem of the album is the KRS-One produced “Mad Crew“. When I first played this track, I said to myself, “This is the reason that KRS calls this the Boom Bap“. You know we got the “mad mad crew up in the house“. The Five Stairsteps drum sample is so stripped down that it gives KRS voice and flow that razor edge. You come to learn from the T’cha! Man that ish is dope!!!
Twinkle, twinkle to the little rap star
I got all type of MC tongue in a pickle jar
So here’s a quick freestyle to my target:
My core audience, *fuck* the rest of the market!
Cause I spark it, styles I loanshark it
Then break your legs if you try to chart it
I got heart, it
Doesn’t take a lot to rock a record, get wit it
Some MCs can’t rock for five minutes
Sorry, that’s not the way to approach me
I rip up lyrical crews and MCs often
You probably don’t know this:
I give birth to MCs
And I also give abortions
I’ll do a number to your body structure
You look like supper
And I’m that hungry motherfucker!
You don’t wanna be on the menu!
I’ll end you, twist you up and bend you
Pick up the microphone and crush up MC like a taco
No, we’re never sad because we nah deal with sorrow
That’s why dem challenge me, jah man you know dem challenge trouble
Me are number one of me there is no double!
And you don’t want no trouble
Cause Blastmaster KRS is flashin’ lyrics on the double
“Brown Skin Woman“, “Return of the Boom Bap” and “Higher Level” round off this incredible album. I’m a huge BDP/KRS-One fan, so I am super biased, so I give this album 4.5 mics. I can listen to this album over and over again. The combo of DJ Premier and KRS-One is one lethal combo.