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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

The Predator

Ice Cube

1992

Buy At Rough Trade
The Predator
Album Summary

The Predator is the third studio album by American rapper Ice Cube. It was released on November 17, 1992 through Lench Mob Records and Priority Records. The album was released just within months of the 1992 Los Angeles riots; many songs comment on racial tensions in the United States. The production on the album was primarily handled by DJ Pooh, Sir Jinx, Torcha Chamba and DJ Muggs. The title is in part reference to the movie Predator 2, and the album itself includes samples from the film.The Predator was supported by three singles: "It Was a Good Day", "Check Yo Self" and "Wicked". The album received generally positive reviews from critics and was also a commercial success. It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart, selling 193,000 copies in its first week. The album was certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in November 2001.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.28

Votes

12297

Genres

  • Hip Hop

Reviews

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Sat Apr 03 2021
3

The linkage of this album to the Rodney King  related race riots in LA struck a nerve. There were 5 reported incidents of racism at my kids' school since Jan. so I  listened to this album  intently. There are a lot of powerful messages delivered very aggressively. It's not comfortable for a white old fart to hear but understand that black folks had enough of their message not being heard and needed to consider ways to turn up the volume.   On the other hand, the inability to refer to their gf by any term other than "bitch: or "ho" waters down their  message. 

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Fri Apr 23 2021
5

Almost 30 years old, and this album's content is as relevant as ever. Not only do the lyrics speak to the continued shooting of unarmed black men by police in the United States, but the beats still pack a punch. Maybe because Ice Cube is speaking from a place of pain that this record still feels so salient in 2021. Protest record for the ages. Fav Tracks: When Will They Shoot, It Was a Good Day and Check Yo Self. Rating 4.5/5

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Thu Feb 18 2021
5

Holy shit I have never listened to this full album but I am loving it! Obviously Today is a Good Day is a banger. I didn’t know Check Yo Self was on this album! This album is so high energy. Side note this album should not be relevant in 2021

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Sat Jul 10 2021
4

Ice Cube’s third album and it is an aural smack to the face, as he spits and rages about inequality, the treatment of blacks in American society, injustice and police brutality over hard hitting beats. This is more than a classic 90s hip hop album - it’s a protest album in the best tradition of, say, Bob Dylan and it lends the project a satisfying cohesiveness as he responds to the acquittal of the police officers who beat Rodney King and the violence that erupted in LA. A few things jar - the homophobia, antisemitism and misogyny are disappointing (although Cube would argue his views are more complex). And whilst a few tracks don’t quite hit the heights and could happily be discarded (Gangsta’s Fairytale 2, Dirty Mack), cuts like Check Yo Self, Now I Gotta Wet Ya and the immortal It Was A Good Day (one of the greatest tracks of the Nineties) more than compensate.

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Wed Jan 27 2021
5

Damn. I can't believe it's almost 30 years later and we're still dealing with the societal issues Ice Cube brings up in this album.

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Sun Jul 25 2021
4

One of my complaints about hip hop in general is a lack of density and variation in the soundscapes. You can't really make that complaint about The Predator, but I think it's a bit dispiriting just the same. For example, the soundscape behind When Will They Shoot? is almost industrial in it's atonality. It's a brutal conglomeration of harsh beats and layered snatches of repetitive samples. But actually, that isn't quite the criticism it sounds like because it fits the subject matter of Ice Cube's raps, which revolve around the causes and aftermath of the Rodney King riots. Ice Cube's raps cut to the bone--they're unfailingly incisive and intelligent. But musically, how are his raps? Well, it seems a little unfair to criticize them for not being very sophisticated rhythmically. These were the early days of rap--and rappers are still using these same rhythmic patterns almost 30 years later, and typically with a lot less wit. The Predator is a hard listen. It's unrelentingly grim. There's little charm in the musical backgrounds, even if they are more rich and layered than is usual in the genre. But on it's own terms, as a straight up no bull dissection of the reality of early 90s America with music to match, it's pretty damned good.

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Wed Dec 08 2021
1

Early 90s gangsta rap. One of the best examples of the genre, but this type of hip hop left me cold at the time. I don't mind the politics, but the misogyny and violence leaves me uncomfortable. I really don't want to listen to this again.

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Sun Sep 05 2021
2

It Was A Good Day est l'arbre qui cache la forêt. Et cette forêt, c'est ce qu'on appelle communément de la merde. Je vous copie ci-dessous un extrait de l'album: "N-word ! N-word encore ! Toujours N-word ! Gang gun gang money... Et si on plaçait un petit N-word par ici ? Bitch mais gang aussi. Hmm... N-word... Money gang bitch fuck et motherfuck. Quoi de mieux qu'un bon vieux motherfuck, à vrai dire. Toutefois, fuck. Mais néanmoins gang et money. Encore merci à tous pour votre accueil je m'appelle Ice Cube, vous pouvez me trouver sur tous les réseaux sociaux."

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Wed Apr 06 2022
5

Racism hasn't changed one bit in the last 30 years huh?

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Fri Feb 19 2021
4

Cool flashback jams from Cube helping push me through the morning with beats and lyrics that not only take me from overthinking on what's going on here, but a vital reminder that the burdens of so many are heavy and historic. I have never listened to The Predator in its entirety before, but it's vibin' here! It Was A Good Day, Check Yo Self, and Who's Got The Camera are a few favs. Glad to know this record and look forward to tapping it more in the future.

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Tue Jul 27 2021
4

Well, I guess I like West Coast rap way better than East Coast. I knew one or two of these, but in general I found it more political with better backing tracks than Wu-Tang etc.

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Sat Oct 16 2021
4

Another excellent entry by Ice Cube. Vocals are strong and so easy to listen to. One of the best songwriting in the genre of the era. Songs are funky and have great use of sampling. Some have catchy choruses making the album very accessible to newcomers. The two songs I heard before, "It Was a Good Day" and "Check Yo Self" are perfect examples of this. Inserts respond to the public's fear of gangsta rap; they happen a little too frequently but they don't disrupt the flow. Some weak tracks on the second side. "A Gangsta's Fairytale" was one of the humurous highlights in his debate, but in this sequel, the woman's "kid" vocals got really annoying and excessive this time, and the lines are less innovative. "Dirty Mack" was monotonous and the the sample got tiresome. "Who Got the Camera?" is another weak song, but I like the middle inserts and style shifts midway through that keep it interesting. Also enjoyed the closing track.

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Fri Dec 04 2020
3

I like this album but it's obviously a turning point - not as cypress hill-y as the next one, but you can hear it coming. Like yeah man, we get it you like weed, and it was a good day is a classic, but if you weren't so high maybe you'd have trimmed the fat off this album. 3/5 because it goes way too long but the good parts are still fuckin great.

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Wed Jun 23 2021
3

Ice Cube has no chill when denouncing sociopolitical issues that plague his community. Best played in a car stereo

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Fri Oct 13 2023
1

Insufferable and monotonous. Ice Cube thinks he such a punk and a rebel, which is hilarious because today there is nothing less rebellious than being black and loud about it. American culture undeniably adores blackness today, and almost every corporation, media outlet, and university pushes black identity politics.

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Fri Oct 13 2023
1

It wasn't very interesting to me and I didn't feel it deserved much of my time or mental energy.

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

- G to the A to the N to the G to the S to the T to the A

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Mon Jan 24 2022
5

I see you, 1001 albums, giving me Ice Cube on the 30th anniversary of his ‘Good Day’. Well played, well played indeed.

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Fri Feb 18 2022
5

A brilliant album! I immediately heard a Public Enemy influence, which was confirmed often in the lyrics and samples used. The use of repetitive news clips was perfection. Repetition legitimizes.

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Thu May 13 2021
4

Great beats samples and references laced throughout. Direct and mostly consistent message following RK delivered with poignant lyrics and supported by well-placed interviews/broadcasts. A few more playful songs sprinkled in kept it lighter without distracting too much.

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Wed Jul 21 2021
4

Straight Outta Compton is great but I haven't really checked each artists' solo work. Ice Cube has a few albums under his belt i've wanted to look at but I totally forgot about "The Predator". A groovy but simple "classic-y" hiphop record. Not much to say about it but i did enjoy it, for the laidback experince i got with it. Not a lot of songs made me go "Wow!" but it has its moments, like "When Will They Shoot?" & "It Was A Good Day" 7/10 As of July 20th, 2021 Best Tracks: When Will They Shoot?, Wicked, The Predator, It Was A Good Day, Check Yo Self, Who Got The Camera? Worst Track: Gangsta's Fairytale 2

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Wed Aug 11 2021
4

Not heard this one before. Good album: funky samples, tight beats, dense lyrics, decent rhyme flow, important message. Not super relevant to me as a white, middle aged, British guy in 2021 though

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Tue Oct 12 2021
4

I'm Scared (Insert) is awesome. And I love the beats to We Had To Tear This Mothafucka Up. The entire album flows well and it is so inappropriate and completely topical at the same time. There are great messages in there. I enjoyed this far more than I thought I would.

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Thu Dec 02 2021
4

A friend once told me about a boy he used to walk to school with. This dude would regularly recite "It Was a Good Day" and my friend always thought it was hilarious that this 15-year-old white suburban kid was spitting lines about not having to use his AK. In the context of the entire album though, that song is a moment of peace in the midst of the chaos of life as a Black man in the early 1990s, in the short hot shadow of the LA riots. The whole album works, inviting the listener in to get a taste of how life is for Cube and his community. Musically it feels like a precursor of Dr Dre's Chronic sound (I know, I know). And there's Cube sending a message to the future which, it turns out not everyone heeded.

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Thu Feb 25 2021
3

Not usually into listening to this genre, but can definitely appreciate the greatness of this album. Some good tracks, beats and great samples. I almost quit halfway thru, but glad I didn't before hearing \"Don't Trust 'Em\", which samples Steely Dan's \"Green Earrings\". Highlights: -It Was a Good Day -Don't Trust 'Em -Check Yo Self

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Fri Mar 12 2021
3

I enjoyed this one as I've enjoyed Amerikkka's Most Wanted and other Ice Cube albums. He's not one to pull any punches - lyrics hit their target with razor sharp precision. Samples are well chosen if a little repetitive at times. Solid hard-charging vibe from start to finish. Aggressive misogyny and homophobia make this one perhaps more a product of its era and less aligned with my current tastes.

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Tue Aug 03 2021
3

I like the railing against the police/racist society stuff, but dislike the misogynist gangsta braggadocio stuff, and unfortunately the latter seems to outweigh the former. Fave tracks - all of the Inserts were pretty great! Prefer them to most of the actual main tracks. "Who Got The Camera?" was pretty good too....

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Wed Oct 25 2023
1

Nah. I disagree that this is an album I need to hear.

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Fri Dec 11 2020
5

One of all time great hip hop albums. Funky, politically charged, angry.... amazing!

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Tue Jan 19 2021
5

Always a fan of Ice Cube. Turns out I knew several of these songs already, but have just never listened to the album in its entirety.

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Wed Feb 17 2021
5

I never knew where Danny Brown got his style from.

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

Dark. Classic. Still relevant.

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Tue Jun 29 2021
5

Ice curbed a poetic ether of ideas still relevant 30 years later, and probably many years earlier

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Fri Feb 19 2021
5

Classic hip hip and classic Ice Cube

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Fri Apr 23 2021
5

The way this record grapples with systemic racism and police brutality feels haunting and prophetic listening in 2021. It's a reminder Black people have been saying this for *decades*, but White people have only started to listen. It also helps that, musically, this record is a real joy to listen to. Can't believe I've slept on this one for so long. Favourite track: "Check Yo Self"

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Wed Apr 07 2021
5

Es kam kurz nach den Rassenunruhen von LA 1992 raus, mit den politisch aufgeladenen Texten hätte es auch 2020 kommen können und niemand hätte sich gewundert. Es ist mehr als nur 'It was a good day'.

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Tue Jul 06 2021
5

Wow: the lyrics are incredibly poignant as I listen to them now as the U.S. has pressing issues of racial injustice and inequality that are in desperate need of real action, real remedy. The opening track "When Will They Shoot?" on its own is enough to add so much depth and thought-provocation to the conversation. I don't remember hearing this album back in the early 90s, but I do know that back then I would've missed the message entirely out of my own naivete and ignorance. This is one I want to come back to and spend more time with.

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Thu May 06 2021
5

Absolute Hip Hop classic. Ice Cube's best album.

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Fri May 07 2021
5

Classic of the genre - Very much enjoyed- Highly recommend. Some brutish thug songs, along with some melancholy introspective tunes.

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Mon May 10 2021
5

90s gangster rap at its best.

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Tue Jul 13 2021
5

Credo di aver ascoltato uno dei migliori album di rap

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Wed Aug 25 2021
5

10/10 hip hop classic ice cube top 5 OAT

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Wed Oct 13 2021
5

Great album. Some classics, and very strong all the way through. Uncomfortably topical for being almost 30 years old.

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Fri Dec 10 2021
5

Amazing west coast hip hop from a legend. Touches on relevant societal issues at the time and still relevant today.

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Tue Feb 01 2022
5

Love that crazy motherfucker named Ice Cube! Great album!

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Wed Feb 09 2022
5

Never listened to this album in full before and I’m glad I did. It’s 2023 and everything he said in this album is still relevant.

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Fri Feb 11 2022
5

I have listened to this album before and it still a great album. Ice Cube's lyrics and rhythm has also been great. Today Was A Good Day is the most well known song on the album. I remember when there was a quest to figure out the exact date of the good day, November 30, 1988 had the strongest argument. Yet Ice Cube said there is no specific date just elements that make up a good day.

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Fri Feb 18 2022
5

Absolute gold. Poignant even 30 years later. The way Mr. Cube uses samples to help tell the story is perfect.

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Thu Mar 10 2022
5

Listened Before? N Another rap classic this week! I'm loving it. Pros: This album is straight up amazing. Ice Cube was one of the last true old-school gangsta rap records. A few weeks later, Dr. Dre dropped The Chronic and changed literally everything. This album got overshadowed IMO... this record deserved more attention than it got (probably mostly from white people). This was released in the same year as the LA riots and the Rodney King trial, and it shows. Ice Cube was PISSED, in a good way. Cons: A couple of outdated slurs here and there but its a sign of the times. Added to Library? Y Songs Added to Playlist: It Was a Good Day, Check Yo Self

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Wed Apr 06 2022
5

Not even remotely surprising that the track that has the least to do with the larger sociopolitical message of the album also happens to be the most well known. I'm a sucker for this type of sampling. Really a time capsule more than most albums from name dropping nba players in the league at the time to Rodney king references and plenty of others I already forgot or didn't even catch. Can't get over "down the street" rhyming with "introduce her to my meat." TPAB's grandpa and I mean that as the highest compliment

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Wed May 04 2022
5

The production on this album is fantastic. Ice Cube has one of the greatest flows of all time and his aggressive delivery punctuates the political and confrontational lyrics. This album is not easily pigeonholed. It contains elements of funk and jazz while using samples in a way that reminds me of some modern day artists like Kanye West and Kendrick Lamar.

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Thu Jun 09 2022
5

WICKED NOW I GOTTA GET CHA IT WAS A GOOD DAY WHEN WILL THEY SHOOT

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Fri Jul 01 2022
5

Crazy how the messages delivered in this album are still so relevant today. Fantastic stuff

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Mon Jul 11 2022
5

What a record. Very nearly 30 years old. Terrifyingly little progress in some quarters in that time since the Rodney King riots. Righteous anger and vitriol ripples through this. Today was a Good Day, obvs one of the best rap songs of all time, even if I sort of blame it's success for Puff Daddy trying to repeat the formula over and over again for years with boring results. But this album is just really high quality the whole way through.

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Wed Aug 17 2022
5

such an influential album. Check Yo Self & It Was a Good Day are so iconic

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Wed Aug 24 2022
5

Más allá de los beats impecables, el comentario social en los skits complementa muy bien el mensaje de cada canción que les precede. Obra maestra del hip-hop de inicios de los 90s.

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Sat Aug 27 2022
5

Classic Ice Cube album, nice surprise to see this album on the list instead of its predessors. Contains Check Yo Self, probably IC's best single ever.

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Wed Sep 28 2022
5

Classic record, love throwing this one on during road trips with my friends

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Wed Nov 23 2022
5

What a difference two years makes! I did not much enjoy the experience of listening to AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted (1990) a couple of months ago. The Predator (1992) showed a tremendous leap in musical maturity. It's intense and serious and compelling but still finds room for humor and play. There were parts that made me feel ill and sad and angry, so it wasn't all a good time. But it was a good listen.

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Wed Nov 23 2022
5

Yeah, I dug it! Not all the themes are appetizing, but overall today was a good listen.

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Thu Dec 08 2022
5

loved it more than I thought I would.

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Mon Dec 12 2022
5

Why are there two “gorillas in the mist” references two songs in a row?

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Sat Dec 31 2022
5

I played this constantly as a teenager in the ‘90s, amazing album.

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Fri Jan 20 2023
5

Ovaj album je kako bi rekao, dok je Cube još bio "in his bag". Dakle još jedan album poslije i to postaje odličan 4 streak od albuma. Dakle: AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted - Death Certificate - The Predator - Lethal Injection. Odlično zaredani albumi, a samim time mi je i Cube uvijek bio u top 5 najboljih repera (bar što se tiče 90-ih i dok je bio u N.W.A.). Kasnije je počeo švrljati, iako mi se svidio Laugh Now, Cry Later - ali to mogu sada zahvaliti nostalgiji jer taj album po lijepim vremenima poznajem (valjda lijepa vremena) - osnovna škola, 2006-2007. godina, slušalice u ušima svaki odmor. No dobro, vraćamo se na ovaj album. Odličan, ali nije na levelu sa prva dva što sam naveo. Odličan album, toliko dobrih trenutaka - najviše It Was A Good Day (što je po meni jedna od najbolji hip hop traka ikad u životu ovom). Iskreno sam mislio da će mi smetati inserti, intro, skitovi, međutim čak su dobri i fora. Ne znam zašto ljudi govore da je ovo pad kvalitete njegove, jer definitivno ne znaju šta pričaju. 4.5.

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Tue Feb 07 2023
5

An absolute classic. "Say hi to the bad guy" is an excellent closing track and this is Ice Cube at the peak of his social observation genius. The Rodney King verdicts has influence all over this album and it is interesting he named the album after a movie about a monster that kills policemen, while the policemen make a knee jerk reaction about the monster's intentions. Maybe there is no symbolism intended there, but I think this album is a must-hear to get the temperate of 1992 Los Angeles.

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Fri Feb 10 2023
5

One of my favourite hip-hop albums ever. Some of his absolute best tracks.

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Thu Feb 16 2023
5

Stone cold classic! I still remember when I got this cassette and EVERYONE wanted a dub of this!

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Wed Mar 08 2023
5

Great album, creative fun, but also deep. Lots of cultural criticism especially around race

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Wed Mar 08 2023
5

west coast masterclass una seleccion de samples increible breaks oscurisimos acompañados de unas letras crudisimas totalmente necesario e innovador siendo un disco de 1992 cuando pocos raperos sonaban asi top 15 mejores discos de rap

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Wed Mar 08 2023
5

Discazo del gangsta rap, lleno de clásicos, punto álgido de ice cube. Un disco crudo como sabe dar el cubo de hielo. Se nota como fue logrando algo más sólido con el tiempo y fue evolucionando para dar hitazos como it was a good Day or check yo self. Must listen del rap y de los 90

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Mon Apr 03 2023
5

I've never listened to an Ice Cube album before, but having listened to NWA, and the fact that Ice Cube seems to permeate every corner of pop culture, I had a pretty good idea what I was in for. It's crazy and also sad that several of the social and political topics on this album are still hot topics today: police violence, the brutality and far reaching scope of the American prison system, segregation, and so on. When it comes to rapping about political and social issues, Ice Cube can channel raw anger in a way that few others can; his lyrics have the candor of a man-on-the-street interview, but delivered with the fierceness of someone hosting a rally. The beats behind the lyrics are really well done too; "It Was a Good Day" and "Check Yo Self" are some of the catchiest, and therefore most recognizable songs in hip hop. The spoken interludes fit really well here too, and "The First Day of School" really unnerved me, which served as a great way to prepare for this album. Ice Cube really executes his vision well on this album, and his work is cornerstone for rap and hip hop.

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Sat Apr 15 2023
5

I’ve had hip-hop albums before, but this is the first one from a really classic artist. Ice Cube is one of the best rappers (outside of the sexism, which also seems to decrease from his other album I’ve listened to [but haven’t gotten] AmeriKKKa’s Most Wanted) and this has superb lyricism. ‘It Was a Good Day’ is undoubtably a classic - it’s upbeat, but it still notes the troubles throughout the rest of the album (two of the good things that happen to him are getting passed by a policeman without any trouble and nobody he knows dying) - it feels earned, rather than just a happy song for the sake of being a happy song. Great through and through.

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Fri Apr 21 2023
5

This sounds like it was the business back in the day and still does. This guy is the real total business.

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Tue May 30 2023
5

Ice Cube's flow is impeccable with an unbeatable aggressiveness and lyrical content that's still relevant today. The beats and production are top tier and there's few albums today that can match it. There's so many bangers on this album and definitely a classic hip hop album.

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Thu Jul 06 2023
5

Yeah but who would win in a fight tho

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Thu Jul 13 2023
5

Genius, from one of the all time greats.

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Fri Jul 28 2023
5

These interludes are almost unsettlingly modern for an album released in 1992. This alone should be enough to prove why the message is even more important now. Back to the music...it's simply incredible. (unfortunately) Timeless themes throughout the music, very heavy rapping with impeccable flow, very creative beats. Love this album. Favorite track: Don't Trust 'Em

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Tue Aug 08 2023
5

Ik mocht al eerder een plaat van deze man horen. Dat was nog niet zo 'verfrissend'. Het miste creativiteit en afwisseling. En al zit The Predator duidelijk in een afgebakend hokje; het is hem nu wel gelukt. Hij zal daarbij goed naar de concurrent gekeken hebben. Je hoort de intonatie van bijvoorbeeld Cypress Hill (We Had to Tear This Mothafucka up) en House of Pain (Check Yo Self). En dit sample-roofdier maakt er geen geheim van dat hij goed naar Public Enemy heeft geluisterd.

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Tue Aug 15 2023
5

A fantastic album which has stood up well over the years. The main themes are still salient and are delivered with a suitable amount of venom. Some great beats in there, too. This was never my favourite Ice Cube album when I was regularly listening to rap, but going back to it I think that I may have been too hasty with that judgement. Definitely a classic.

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