Step in the Arena is the second studio album by hip hop duo Gang Starr, printed as a 1990 release, and commercially released on January 15, 1991. In 2007, it was named the greatest hip hop album of all time by IGN.com. HipHopDX called it "the album that cemented Gang Starr as a timeless tag team."Wikipedia
This is one of the most important hiphop albums ever produced even though a lot of folks outside of the scene haven't heard of it. In a time when hiphop was fracturing and trying desperately to find out what it was and what it could be, Gang Starr brought heavy, intellectual, clever lyrics over deeply funky boom-bap beats. The influence of this album can be felt in modern artists like The Roots, Sho Baraka, Nappy Roots, and Blackalicious. Musical significance aside, it's just real damn good. Just DAMN good. An absolute pleasure to listen to.
Some of the smoothest rhymes and rhythms I've ever heard. This album has aged like a fine wine. I imagine it was considered rather intense when it came out, but in the rearview, it is so mellow and enjoyable. I never wanted it to end.
“Step in the Arena” by Gang Starr (1991) Never heard the album or this duo, and my familiarity with the hip hop genre is quite limited. Musically, the producer in the duo, DJ Premier, puts together a fine background, providing solid rhythms and scratching, with some tentative forays into sampling. I’m sure this was innovative in 1991, and likely very influential, but it doesn’t seem to stand the ‘test of time’. Guru’s voice lacks expressive range, and in rapid phrases he frequently mumbles to retain the tempo. His tone is subdued, letting the startling nature of the words carry the artistic freight. That’s appealing. In terms of meaning, his lyrics are marked by self absorbed boastfulness, with an expansive range of metaphors from gladiators to those who covet luxury vehicles. It’s illustrated in the title track, “Step in the Arena”, which compares rap competition to lethal one-on-one combat. But the lethality serves no goal other than entertainment. There’s no consideration of the moral standing of the purveyors and consumers of these nihilistic spectacles. The meaning is “I’m the best” and that is to your detriment. He seems to want his listeners to want to adopt the same attitude. Here’s a significant line indicating that he is aware, even in 1990, that the rap/hip hop world was overpopulated with junk: “Abreast of the best in this rap mess Oversaturated market full of wackness” There is a form of intellect on display here. Skillful use of internal rhyme and other poetic devices without being mechanical. This is not doggerel. Plus, Guru is a keen observer of his culture. In “Who’s Gonna Take the Weight?”, Guru advances key themes of the message of the Nation of Islam. After an opening sample of a couple of lines from Malcolm X, Guru declaims, “I was raised like a Muslim”, which is highly unlikely, given his solid middle class background, but the selective appropriation of NOI themes continues. Ultimately the lyric lacks persuasiveness, chiefly because it is so self focused. Guru needs to enter the heart of the listener. These lyrics generally lack drama. There’s plenty of violence, and elaborate imagery, but little storytelling, redemption, conflict resolution, or artistic closure. It’s simply a catalogue of unanswered questions and unsolved problems (unless the answers and solutions boil down to “give everything to me”). The poetry usually evokes little emotion other than pity and perhaps fear. The one grand exception to this bleak assessment is the track “Just to Get a Rep”. It tells a powerful tale of a man who unnecessarily uses lethal force on a victim merely to enhance his own reputation. The victim recovers and returns to kill him, also motivated by the desire “just to get a rep” (reputation). The poetic composition powerfully invites the listener to consider whether it’s worth it. Of course it’s not. But one wonders how many listeners were persuaded in that direction. Not the greatest hip hop, in my admittedly limited experience. 2/5
This is the finest example of old-school hip-hop I've heard yet. The sound is clearly indebted to the East Coast, and while there's not as much Southern innovation as say, Outkast, touches exist. The production and turntablism is insanely good. The flows are all relatively familiar ones from the era, but they're convincing and use enough tempo and theme variation to remain fresh.
Loving the cool flavour and rhythm of this album! I have heard some tunes by Gang Starr before, but totally forgot about these guys. The first full Step In The Arena listen was a lot of fun chillin' in the crib, and then kickin' it a 2nd time in the car on an hour drive to hike in the woods was smooth as well. Banjo was salivating on that drive, so I assume he was diggin' too. The song Take A Rest represents most what I am enjoying from this record. Thanks dudes, it was refreshment after the desert of yesterday's album!
This is not the album to convince me that hiphop is worth my listening time.
I simply don't like rap. These two definitely don't have the most annoying voices in rap, so this is at least 1.5 stars instead of 1, but I'll still round it down for being super boring. I didn't make it past the fifth track. The pseudo-intelligent-sounding lyrics don't help either.
Probably prefer Moment Of Truth but man, this is some great stuff. Just To Get A Rep is up there with the best they've done.
Perfect! Brings me back to my love of hip hop. The rhymes and rhythms created by the rappers’ deliveries is east coast at its finest!
I don't think anything Guru touches could be less than a 5. Absolutely love GangStarr and Guru is one of the best MCs of all time. 5/5
A fantastic rapper and one of the best producers create an album full of brilliant, classic hip-hop tracks.
You Gotta be kidding me, this is a top 10 hip-hop classic for me. Right up there with Illmatic, 36 Chambers and Low End Theory. Banger after banger on this Jawn. Straight fire!
Never took the time to check out Gang Starr, but this was a pleasant surprise. It's hit and miss for me with hiphop and rap, but this hit me for sure. Smooth and groovy, just the way I like it.
90s hip hop will always have a special place in my heart. It may not be for everyone, but this album demonstrates both great 90s hip hop production from DJ Premier, and great lyricism from Guru, in a collaboration that has gone on to be considered among the best for it's time, and onwards too, considering the latest releases from Gang Starr (posthumously from Guru). I have never heard this debut album, but I see why Gang Starr became so popular. This has everything you want out of that era, the jazzy samples, the social commentary topics, the little humorous skits, and the real chemistry that both artists demonstrate working together. The only reason I wouldn't give this a 5/5 is because I prefer other albums from that time (Tribe Called Quest do this all better IMO) but it's still fantastic.
Hip hop with a purpose. Lyrically sound - good beats. Fun to listen to. Can definitely hear their influence in a lot of later hip hop. Only a few songs didn’t age as well because of that early 90’s “starter jacket” type feel. (Not that it’s a bad thing - just sounds dated today) Fave tracks: “Check The Technique” “Step In The Arena”
It may be that rap albums hit some kind of pinnacle in the early 90s where the clean lyrics and fun rhymes grew into something more complex but also more raw in its content. Maybe that was an East vs. West type of thing. Notably, the album's sound includes a lot of jazz elements, simple beats, and a very modest yet effective DJ. Lyrically, it comes off as an inviting narrative to 'come and sit while I tell this story' and the listener is indeed compelled to do just that. Where rap music eventually turned into various outlets of strong expression, this album is way more conversational in its delivery and less confrontational. "Just To Get A Rep" or "Execution Of A Chump" stand out as the implications of violence that this portion of the hip-hop culture draws much of its emotion and content. Thing is, previously mentioned, the listener is compelled to hear this out. Over time, this subject matter has lost its importance because of its marketability and most people see it for that thirty years later as though Gang Starr knew that "Just To Get A Rep" is a reality moving forward. The album may have more musical reasons for being on this list, but for this listener and perhaps because of an old soul, this album creates a nostalgic desire for 21st century rap/hip-hop to come back with that authenticity. An authenticity that perhaps Gang Starr prophetically touched on in "Form of Intellect" with "...oversaturated market, full of wackness" and "get real, get deep, so you can keep involved, resolve and solve, so you can make the calls". If one pays attention to the current entertainment industry, the power figures in rap/hip-hop seemed to have heeded this advice. They may have come up from the streets per se, but they did not stay there. These men and women are now moguls in their own right, kings and queen makers of that world. "Step In The Arena" is a challenging album, maybe even a bit preachy but that's the value here and perhaps a more philosophical reason this album is on the list.
Good album. I liked all the songs except 'Love Sick' (and even that one was ok). I can see myself listening to this again, now just to decide between 3 and 4 stars...
Nothing other than production stood out to me
It's rap and nothing special
Not a fan of Gangster rap. Lyrics were clean which is interesting.
I'll give credit due when its due. Gang Starr have good rapping vocals and their sound isn't cheesy like a fair chunk of rap/ hip hop music around that time. There are a couple of decent songs here too. But as a whole this was as interesting as a ham sandwich, has the essential elements but nothing enticing for me.
If this is the greatest hip hop album of all time, then I should probably stop giving hip hop a chance.
Hip Hop - 0.5/5
Old skool rap
Some of the most solid roots of all good hip hop
Really enjoyed this album. Need to revisit it again!
For lange sanger
Incredible. End to end amazing vocals lyrics and production. Love it.
AWESOME. consistent and complete hip hop album
A revelation - really enjoyable
Never listened to it all the way through, very good
Old school hip hop at its finest
Wow, the lyricism and flow are amazing. I think Check the Technique or Lovesick was my favorite, but honestly I enjoyed every track. I will be purchasing this and adding it to my collection :)
DJ Premier!!! Super smooth old skool hip hop, very very good
Ohhhh Shit, Gang Starr 4 Life!!!!
5/5 - Forever Dope
The prototype for 90s group gangster rap. Smoother than NWA but harder than west coast G funk, it's super awesome.
Okay więc jest bardzo dobrze. Mam wrażenie, że jeden z moich nowych ulubionych albumów hip hopowych. Nawet nie wiem co mówić bo wszystko mi się podobało. Ulubione kawałki: check this technique take rest say ur prayers just to get a rap step in the arena.
Very cool album! I’m really trying to discover more rap so this really helped.
18th January 2022 Listened on the way to book club at the standard. 90s hip hop. Love it.
Wow c'est très bon. Je vais certainement réécouter l'album. 5
Classic hip-hop that I had never heard before. I loved it though, and will definitely hunt out more of their stuff. Execution of a chump, and the meaning of the name were my favourites first time through, but I will revisit it to pick up the lyrics and flow of some of the denser tracks too
Immaculate flow with a classic sound and classic beats. A genuine time capsule.
Incredibly important hip hop record smooth beats and dangerous rhymes a truly enjoyable listen, influenced many artists like the roots etc
So many samples!
I liked it. Reminds me of ATCQ
90s Hip-hop are one of my favourite genres. So safe to say this went down very well.
East Coast Hiphop,old school,smooth and tense,real Classic!
Never heard Gang Starr before but this is amazing. Great flow. Old school hip hop Reminds me of J5 or Abdominal...
This is why I downloaded the app
This is a band at the top of their game. Guru is greatly missed
Listens: 2 Enjoyed: fuck yeah Never really delved into Gang Starr but fuck this is a great album. I don't think there is a single skipable track
Always had a soft spot for these guys was shocked to hear Guru passed had no idea. At a time when hip was going going gangsta these guys did something different something jazzy. Hi class
Don't normally listen to hip hop but this was enjoyable.
Great early rap album.
Another great album that is outside of my normal wheelhouse. I'm not sure which school of hip hop this one falls in, but I like it. Would definitely listen again. 4 stars.
Really great album that flies under the radar! This is up there with Eric B and Rakim, but might actually be better! Great flow, and hits hard.
Fav Song: Check the Technique
I think I like early rap better than late 90s and 2000s rap. I think it had a different sound and purpose. And I think my own feelings of “I don’t like rap” from that time period were probably colored by my influences.
and, for whatever reason, i liked this one way more than Ready To Die, which was yesterday's pick. just felt right
I think I have learned from this challenge that I like hip hop! I guess I also associated rap with like Snoop Dog and 50 Cent and PDiddy and whatever was in the 90s/00s charts which was really shite. This though- there's great beats in this, love the 90s sound, dunno the right terms but like the sampling and scratching. The rapping is pretty chill and smoothly rhythmic, lulling and poetic.
A little too long for this early 90s style, but I really enjoyed this album. Jazz beats and great wordplay make this a great departure from the previous hip hop we’ve listened to.
I really enjoy this era of hip hop. Arrested Development, Public Enemy, De La then prearranging taste of music to come in the following years.
Was für einen Unterschied Kopfhörer machen können! Zuerst dieses Juwel über Boxen und nicht besonders laut gehört - ganz nice, aber nun wirklich nicht aufregend. Hörte man bisschen so weg. Dann am späteren Abend noch mal mit - basstarken - Headphones, und oh my God: Primo, das biste ja! Dichte Samples, aber knochentrocken und locker gestreut, luftig, reduziert und (rate mal ...) jazzy. Schon fast jeepig, aber andererseits wahnsinnig kultiviert. Gurus Rapstyle - ja, das machte man damals so, mit dem Preaching und der Berichterstattung und der Consciousness. Vielleicht heute bisschen dated (im Gegensatz zu Premiers wirklich immer freshen Beats), aber trotzdem I like it. Wirklich schöne (wieder-)Entdeckung!
„But yo I don`t look for hassles, my rhymes are like castles“ Gang Starr‘s soft power ist so heilsam genrefern, dabei stark und mit ordentlich Rückgrat gegenüber „the weak stuff you heard from those creampuffs“. Und wie ausgeglichen, gar aus männlicher Sicht feministisch „Lovesick“ mit toxischer Eifersucht umgeht, hab ich im US Rap auch noch nie gehört. Die Beats wirken anfangs altbacken, nehmen mit der Dauer an Schärfe zu, bleiben aber lässig und manche bass line könnten die Beastie Boys eingeschnürt haben, wie im ohnehin handwerklich großartigen „Take A Rest“. Sanftmütige 4.1
My favorite type of hip hop
Nearly a five after a couple of listens, laid back rap, like Erik b and rakim
90's East Coast Hip Hop, yes please
Really nice hip hop album, very chill
DJ Premiere is the be of the greatest producers of all time and Guru is a great MC but there are better Gangstarr albums.
Again, one song, but it's a bloody good one! Must have been hugely different from other rap when it was released.
Very consistent album filled with some nice beats and some good lyrical flow
Great album. I enjoyed it and will listen again.
Solid hip-hop. Lyrics along the lines of "Watch me rap better than you" which I prefer to the "I'm going to kill you" vibe. Samples were catchy but repetitive within a track.
Niet mijn kopje thee, maar door de pure eenvoud van de muziek pakt het me stiekem toch. Ik zal het niet gauw zelf opzetten, maar waardeer het toch met 4 sterren omdat ik wel kan horen hoe goed het is
Super album! Echt een aanrader wat mij betreft. Lekker oldschool met goede beats.
Hugely influential. Some of the rhymes didn't age super well, but the influence on subsequent hip hop duos is clear. Best track: Just to Get a Rep
Riiktigt bra. Dock för långt
clean and unique sound. coulda done without a few filler songs. excellently produced. enjoyable good 90s hip hop 😈
ЧТО: Второй студийный альбом хип-хоп дуэта из Бруклина. Признанная классика хип-хопа. Группа, каждый альбом которой продавался многомиллионными тиражами. КАКОЙ: Классический хип-хоп из 90-х. Много джаза, ритм-н-блюза, фанка и соула в сэмплах. Мелодичный ярко выраженный бас. Развитая техника сэмплирования. Я уловил только очевидное (например, сэмпл из Rapper’s Delight), уверен, там очень много всего. Чувствуется, что Gang Starr с Восточного берега. Они сочетают африканскую музыку с танцевальной, подхватывая свой уникальный стиль. Получился мягкий джаз-рэп времён расцвета американского хип-хоп олдскула, который заметно контрастирует с жёсткими остросоциальными мотивами в творчестве их, если так можно сказать, коллег: Public Enemy и Run-D.M.C. Довольно революционно звучит интерлюдия посреди альбома. Это сейчас их стали пихать когда можно и когда нельзя. В то время это было редкостью. О ЧЕМ: Лирика альбома, естественно, не обходится без сторителлинга. Альбом полон рассказов о женщинах, трудностях жизни чёрного человека в Америке, о религии. Важная тема - мастерство исполнителей. Они доказывают, что лучше всех управляются на битах. Об этом свидетельствует и название. DJ Premier и Guru предлагают всем, кто их критикует, выйти с ними на арену и разобраться. На Check the technique они советуют их соперникам в игре (как бы это не звучало) поработать над своей техникой, чтобы быть с участниками Gang Starr на одном ринге. Это те основы, без которых не обходится хип-хоп. Это базис хип-хоп культуры как образа жизни и принципа творчества. Это не мои выдумки; а то, что говорят об этом классические исполнители и преданные слушатели этой музыки. ИТОГ: Замечательный хип-хоп альбом. Повлиял на звук многих современных рэперов. Обильное использование джаза и интерлюдии - то, что стало можно значительно позже. Это альбом-заявление, который начинается с того, что участники дуэта представляются. Они не собираются прятаться и готовы доказать, что лучшие в игре (ещё раз извиняюсь за слово «игра» в этом контексте). Альбом не зря назван классикой хип-хопа.
(Old S)Cool & the Gang
good shit, really nice production and fun lyrics. i’ll give it a 7/10, overall just really cool.
good shit 4
Very cool hip hop album. Not perfect, but it's a fun classic rap album
10/19 Smooth beats matched with superb storytelling and sharp lyricism. Standout Tracks: Execution of a Chump, Beyond Comprehension, Lovesick, Here Today, Gone Tomorrow, Just To Get a Rep, Precisely the Right Rhymes, The Meaning of the Name
Strong album, I'd listen again!
I’m not sold on these cats. They were influential on the East Coast rap scene, and in some ways, directly responsible for Wu-Tang Clan. There is a hardcore thread running through this record that definitely shows up in future artists. They had some sick rhymes with lyrical substance, but it never really gets cooking on the album. It’s reminiscent of ATCQ, but with none of the excitement or verve. It’s just kind of…there. (7/10) FT: Step in the Arena, Execution of a Chump
Fantastic, obvious root and influence of many mcs to come
Nie mam dużo do powiedzenia na temat tego albumu, uwielbiam oldschoolowy hiphop, a ten krążek mimo że nie zaskoczy nikogo niczym w 2021, to jednak nie zestarzał się ani trochę bo doskonale się broni od strony muzycznej i produkcyjnej jako takie klasyczne brzmienie HH, ciepłe, organiczne (dzięki charakterystyce sampli i wokali) i lekko niesforne. W chuj duży podziw dla głównego producenta za całokształt i consistence albumu, a dla guru za consistent flow (warstwie lirycznej nie miałem okazji przyjrzeć się z bliska gdyż nie jestem na tyle obeznany z tekstem). Ulubione kawałki: Step In The Arena (nostalgiczne wrażenia, mimo że nie grałem nigdy w GTA), Who's Gonna Take The Weight, Game Plan (fajny przerywnik, chociaż niekoniecznie ciekawe jest przejście z niego w nastepny utwór pod względem kompozycji), Take A Rest (ten jeden bardziej obskurny sample mnie kupuje wraz z dynamiką tego kawałka i przerzucaniem sie między samplami, które momentalnie zmieniają charakter kawałka), Just To Get A Rep, Precisely The Right Rhymes.
Classic hip hop doesn’t get much better than this
Really enjoyed this one. Great slab of hip hop
Love 90s rap! Definitely will need to listen again.
Everything 90s rap was trying to be.
Super funky fresh flow and groooooovy
Great flow, good beats. 90’s hip hop is the best.
Not bad. Decent rap album
Wow. Great album. Group I have heard spoken about a lot, and now I get it. Put this up there with Tribe Called Quest as some of my favorite rap progenitors.
Pure, clean flow. I don't normally listen to rap, but this was actually a very good listen.
Okay so I'm not really a fan of alot of mainstream rap mainly for lines like "never stop thrustin into your system" which kinda caught me off guard but some songs i really really loved on this album One of my fav tracks was the execution of a chump cos i really loved the beat and the sound 4/5 pleasantly surprised <3
Wasn't familiar-now I am! Listened to Gang Starr all day. Who's Gonna Take the Weight was my fave song, but no bad ones here imo!
I liked this one. Very smooth flow and great beats. Good lyrics too. Would definitely listen again.
Surprisingly, I liked it. This just might encourage me to seek out more simmilar hip hop
Funky Funky Funky - Funky Beats from Premier and Rhymes from the MC represented the common man. Had a lot of fun with this
back to back, let's go!
Prefs: Step in the Arena, Who's Gonna Take The Weight?, Check The Technique, Here Today, Gone Tomorrow, Street Ministry, Just To Get A Rep, As I Read My S-A Moins pref: Precisely The Right Rhymes
Never heard this and really, really liked it.
Fine - didn’t finish yet
Step in The Arena, Daily Operation, Hard To Earn - they always sounded equally good to me - just very consistent, high-quality rap albums- and to have one of these albums included in the 1001 list is very nice.
Guru has an iconic voice
I enjoyed this album quite a bit. The samples and beats were classic east coast hip hop with the jazzy feel and the vocal delivery was very intentional and methodical. Though this album was long, I was able to get through it without any fatigue
dikke priem, wel veel van hetzelfde maar daarom juist chill om dit te luisteren tijdens het leren
Very nice. I liked it!
This is the second Gang Starr album that I've heard, and it’s much better than the one that I listened to. Production on this album isn't that crazy, but I can excuse that. I feel like when Dr. Dre released The Chronic just one year later is when production really got amazing, with all the amazing samples that he used. The chemistry between Gang Starr and DJ Premier is just fucking amazing. I mostly know DJ Premier for the stuff that he's done with Ye, Eminem and Royce Da 5'9, but he's been given us these amazing scratches for so long that it's obvious why people would have him on their album. The only times that I've really listened to Gang Starr is when his 8 Mile track comes on, but I feel like that has to change after this. The cover art is kind of basic, but I can forgive it. It was the 90's, and It’s cool to me such a young Gang Starr and DJ Premier. Also, the font that they use is pretty cool. Favourite track would be "Execution Of A Chump", because it sounds like this is something that actually happened to Gang Starr due to the rone that he is using. Least favourite track would be nothing, since I have no idea if I tracks are worse than other Gang Starr tracks, since I haven't heard many 9/10
I always think of myself as someone who doesn’t like rap and hip-hop but whenever I hear this earlier stuff from the 90s I really like it.
classic 80s/90s rap. solid beats and tight rhymes. nothing flashy, just simple and well-executed.
I really loved the run of songs from "Who's Gonna Take the Weight" to "Check the Technique." I ended up loving this album. A nice refresher from the past few we've listened to as I was excited when each new song started. The lyrics were snappy, smart, and could be anything from funny to poignant.
Great stuff. And the first time I've heard The Band sampled.
I really dig it
Guru could read a dictionary and I would listen to it
This is yummy
Guru's a great rapper but Premier's production in this is on another level. Great record.
The execution here is on point. Everything solid about MC/rapper combos is here. The flow is confidently smooth and laced with intelligence. The 90's is heavily here without needing all the "it was the times" qualifiers. Those pieces of The Chronic, The Predator, and The Low End that aged horribly are missing here without losing the cultural relevance to the moment of its creation. That elevates the work. Maybe it wasn't on the charts like those other albums but the slow burn here is a legacy play that'll last longer.
Very enjoyable chill album. Very easy to listen to the lyrics.
Awesome 90s Hip-Hop album. Great lyrics.
I've heard great things about Hard to Earn and Moment of Truth, so I'm glad my expectations were met with this record. In a time where gangsta rap was on the rise, we have rappers like Q-Tip and Guru with smooth verses and intricate samples. It's simple, no experimental sounds, the songs don't evolve much, and they're fairly short, with tracks in the 2nd half hardly ever passing 3 minutes. This just an MC and his DJ, and it's among one of the best I've seen. Excellent scratching, beats, mixing, and pacing. Samples are groovy: jazz, funk, and soul. It suffers as expected. It's a bit too long for 50 minutes. And I found myself spacing out for many of the tracks. By the 2nd half, there were only a few highlights that would attract my attention. Also the cut to "As I Read My S-A" was harsh and loud. Favorites: Step Into the Arena, Who's Gonna Take the Weight, Check the Technique, Precisely the Right Rhyme
I well enjoyed this. I liked that some of the songs were about quite banal things like your girlfriend getting jealous and changing weekend plans. I thought it was really easy listening with fun samples. I think Avalanches must have re sampled some of these. Would listen again
Relaxed, vibey, chill 90's hip hop. I could put this on to unwind to, and the interplay between the flow and the beats seems to bring out more than the sum of their parts. Who knew Ringo's son had this in him?
Great rhymes, solid vocals, classic hip hop production. Always a solid listen!
Very solid old school. Where Premier came from before PRhyme. Understated beats and conscious lyrics.
Cool classic 90s rap music. I enjoyed the lyrics, flow, and beats. I will definitely check out more of their discography.
Great example of old school rap. This came out at a time where the world was getting tired of it so I don't think this really got its due. I think if it came out a couple of years earlier more people would be aware of it. I sort of dismissed it at the time but looking back it really equals if not surpasses anything else like it. No real variety in sound but clever and smooth lyrics make up for that. These days though I don't really have a reason to listen to old school rap unless it's for nostalgia and this doesn't do that for me.
Þetta kom á óvart. Frábært stykki
Dj Premier is my favorite producer of all time. All of his beats are classic & you can hear the hunger in Guru's rhymes. This is definitely old school with the squealy beats & melodies & admittedly I much prefer their late 1990s beats, but it's fun to go back and see where they started.
I enjoyed this one a lot. Negative: the flows get a little tedious and after a while it’s tough to pay attention to all the raps. Positives: interesting subjects, great rhymes and lyricism, great beats. 7/10
Great album. I'd previously only heard a couple of Gang Starr songs however I'd imagine a few of these will make their way into regular listening.
This was a good album! I enjoyed listening. I appreciate a good rap album like this one. Notably, 'Lovesick' 8/10
Not my thing, but it can be heard in the back.
Nice to listen to in the background, good beats and good rhythm
Old school rap. Love this stuff. The tunes take me back to high school, and even though back then I truly didn't get the lyrics or the music, it's something I really appreciate now. Pieces like "As I Read My S-A" have a lyrical acumen that you don't hear in a lot of rap nowadays. It reminds me a lot of De La Soul, actually. And it wanted me to look for more. Definitely not something I do with a lot of albums. No skits or throwaway songs, these were all coherent to the album, fitting very well. If you had not heard of Gangstarr, this is probably a good one to listen to because it sold me on them.
nice and mellow with a bit of an ladies love Cool James vibe. a little bit irritating that he just banged on about how bloody good at rapping he is.
This is solid
In general I like the groove in this album. It<s slow and sensual. There are some annoying noises in a couple of the songs but in general I can easily swing to it. The rapping is subtle and understated which works for me. Reminds me of Rapture by Blondie or Grandmaster Flash. As with many rap albums it sounds a little samey by the time you get through the middle and for me it can be difficult to make it through the whole album, thankfully though it does clock in at less that 50 minutes (barely), so that's a plus. 2nd time through better than the first. Getting the idea that each song is a vignette, a character study that gets its point and theme across and then moves on. No unecessary fat. I tend to like this rap style like Tribe Called QuestI'm tempted to give it 4 stars. In fact I will.
Gang Starr (Guru i DJ Premier) su jedan od najjačih dueta u hip hopu. Meni su u top 5, ako ne i u top 3. Guru sa svojom vještačkom rimom, flowom, glasom na mikrofonu i Premier sa svojim nikad lošim produciranim stvarima naprave kaos u pozitivnom smislu. Jest da su se još pronalazili ovdje kako bi dalje napravili bombe od albuma - svejedno, ovaj album je važan za slušati ukoliko želiš ući u njihov teritorij iliti arenu. Miris stare škole.
Zapravo dost dobro. Pjesma who's gonna take the weight mi je najdraža.
Definitely must the same era as Public Enemy who I'm sure came first.
Gang Starr - one of best yet. But maybe not yet fully developed at this stage. Similar vein to Eric B & Rakim and Boogie Down Productions, a quality duo with classic samples and awareness in the lyrics. The album just got a bit macaroni cheese for me: I like Macaroni, I like cheese but after 50mins of nothing but macaroni and cheese I need something else in the mix to spice things up.
Really enjoyable and I don't tend to like sample loops. Guru is just super chill and smooth.
More song I knew than I realised! Good chilled out early hip hop!
Melko solidia old schoolia
This is amazing. I love the musicality of this album. The production does have an 80's vibe but not in the synth way that I usually think of 80's music. I will be listening to this again for sure.
Good lyrics, not my favorite delivery. Beats are okay, “softer” than most rap from the time.
A great rap album from the early 90s.
Enjoyed this one more than some of the other 90s hip hop. Lyrically strong without unnecessary excessive profanity. I'm trying to focus more on the lyrical quality of this genre to help me enjoy it more.
Some good beats and classic messages
That bell sound is back on Say Your Prayer, fucking love that little bell. This was a 3 until I read that all this is produced with two turntables. The production was getting a bit repetitive but if all they're working with is samples on a turntables then fair enough. His rhymes are a bit cheesy at times but all up pretty sick.
DJ Premiere! Otherwise, sure it’s pretty good.
Consistently great, classic, sample-heavy production from DJ Premier. Guru is a solid rapper, but ESPECIALLY in this early album, it's a lot of early, not-very-interesting cliched styles.
Solid rap and beets. I wasn’t wowed by anything.
Liking the low-key delivery and presentation; this drink goes down smooth. 6/10
Ganstar rap is exactly what it is: old school rap. Not particularly great, but not bad either
This is old-school rap at its finest, plenty of great classic soul/funk loops and thoughtful rhymes.
Old school hip hop. It might be key record back in the day, now it sounds dated and not special...
3.3 - Classic old school hip hop sound. Sunny, poppy, "conscious." Some corny rhymes here and there, but overall there's plenty to like.
Ayy I've listened to this one before. Big Mos Def vibes but not as good
Not quite sure how these guys had passed me by until now. Coming to it 30 years late it obviously sounds pretty old school but you can see the influence they had on loads of people who came after them, including some of my favourite artists like Jurassic 5. Enjoyed it, but probably enjoy what it led to more.
Not usually my kind of tunes, but surprisingly enjoyed this. Witty rhymes and lyrics that are actually interesting and I also really liked the music. Cool strings/ brass and piano up in there. Getting Diggable/ tribe called Q vibes. *who's gonna take the weight, beyond comprehension, Check the technique, as I read my S-A
Good album. It is the sort of hip hop I like.
Enjoyed this, not listened to these two before though I've heard of Premier. Good 3*
Had three listens. I do really like it, but... BAD THINGS: I never pay any attention to actual lyrics (besides the enunciation of individual phrases) and that's the main appeal of rap music, so I'm unlikely to ever score hip-hop a high mark because my brain just ignores all the best features of this music. Hopefully I can get out of that trap over time. GOOD THINGS: Great style, love the brass and guitar samples making it all jazzy, and all the basslines are incredibly groovy. I like that the lyrical content isn't so vulgar like in some hip-hop, but the lyrics are delivered in a very assertive manner which comes across well. FAVOURITE TRACKS: "Take A Rear", "Who's Gonna Take The Weight", and "Step in the Arena".
Meh. The problem with 90's hiphop is that we have Kendrick Lamar now and he is the King.
Ah 90s hip-hop, feels like a distant paradise in a sea of mumble-bumble bollocks. I'm not saying there isn't a time and a place for mumble rap, it just doesn't fit into my schedule very often. Anyway... Step In The Arena was an album that gave me a brilliant feeling. I love the old school beats and the old school everything to be honest. Only reason it isn't getting higher is due to the album not having any absolute stand out tunes on there for me. I liked Step In The Arena but generally, this is an album full of pretty good tunes. I'm loving it more for the vibe.
ух ты нихуя себе реп хз почему этот альбом сунули, он самый слабый т.к. самый первый да и 91й год это ж пиздец базовый уровень. слышно прям явно как все реперы того времени вдохновлялись ракимом - тематика без особой жести, слабенькие панчи про то какой я КРУТОЙ, а вы ФУФЛО максимально поверхностные, за такие щас засмеют. хотя на то время это было пиздец прорывом и потом лет 5 все так и звучали. строчки с плотно уложенным текстом на всю длину такта и иногда выходящие на новую строку тоже отличительная черта. про биточки уж че и говорить, два прихлопа да погнали зато сигнатурный скретчинг премьера в первозданном виде кек вместо этого альбома лучше б 1998 Moment of Truth включили, раз уж репа тут так мало рип гуру хули
Нормальная тема, хоть ни в одну тему особо и не залип. Особенно удачным показался второй трек. Флоу бодрый, но не слишком харизматишный или технишный. Думаю, продукт своего времени, для которого было збс. Ныне немного скушновато. Но эстетикой олдскула норм веет, понадобилось бы - спиздил бит.
Classic Guru rhymes on dusty premier beats. You can't go wrong with this pairing. Nothing especially stood out on this ablum, and it is hard to rate it higher when I think of the other work these two did.
nice start. *takes notes* apparently the dj's name is premier and this dude's the guru. well so far it's exactly what i expected from the intro + year this came out. i like this well enough. i'm on song 3 and i'm bored already help. 'you puny protozoa'. this whole song is too much. he's not like the other rappers. 'strangely enough i've been struck, affected by her smile' lmao. it's a short thing but my fave track was 'say your prayers'. other than that one i liked 'precisely the right rhymes'. i'm most likely not coming back to this record but his lyrics were fun, the music was boring though. 2.5.
Typical gang starr. Beats cah get repetitive but there are some good ones.
Very cool and chilled. Great lyrics, great beats. That said, like a lot of hip hop I find it's in one ear, out the other, but that's just me. I don' think I really pay enough attention to it.
-Seems like a step between early rap and more modern rap, with slightly more complex rhyme schemes than old school rap -"Lovesick" stood out as the best track -"Step In The Arena," "Here Today, Gone Tomorrow," and "What You Want This Time?" were pretty solid
This album sounds like it must have been innovative at the time, and clearly Gang Starr is extremely talented. But it was not really our thing.
Need to make a Playlist with Gangstarr and Aesop Rock.
Very well made, great poetic lyrics. Quite repetitive on a full play through. “Love Sick” and “Take a Rest” are the standouts for me
Alright album. Lyrically it’s above average. Beats are true to the 90s and only a couple songs stand out. Mostly it’s a standard 90s rap album. 6.5/10