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Raising Hell

Run-D.M.C.

1986

Buy At Rough Trade
Raising Hell
Album Summary

Raising Hell is the third studio album by American hip hop group Run-D.M.C., released on May 15, 1986, by Profile Records. The album was produced by Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin. Raising Hell became the first Platinum and multi-Platinum hip hop record. The album was first certified as Platinum on July 15, 1986, before it was certified as 3× Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on April 24, 1987.Raising Hell peaked at number three on the Billboard 200, and number one on the Top R&B/Hip Hop Albums chart making it the first hip hop record reach atop the latter. The album features four hit singles: "My Adidas", "Walk This Way" (a collaboration with Aerosmith), "You Be Illin'" and "It's Tricky". "Walk This Way" is the group's most famous single, being a groundbreaking rap rock version of Aerosmith's 1975 song "Walk This Way". It is considered to be the first rap rock collaboration that also brought hip-hop into the mainstream and was the first song by a hip hop act to reach the top 5 of the Billboard Hot 100.Raising Hell has been ranked as one of the greatest albums of all time. In 1987, it was nominated for a Grammy Award, making Run DMC the first hip hop act to receive a nomination. In the same year for this album Run-D.M.C. was nominated for Album of the Year and won Best Rap Album at the 1987 Soul Train Music Awards. In 2018, it was inducted into the National Recording Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or artistically significant". The album was reissued by Arista Records in 1999 and 2003. An expanded and remastered edition was released in 2005 and contained 5 previously unreleased songs. Selling more than three million copies, Raising Hell is credited with heralding the golden age of hip hop as well as hip hop's album era, helping the genre achieve an unprecedented level of recognition among critics.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.52

Votes

12460
Genres
Hip Hop

Reviews

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Thu Jan 14 2021
4

I relate very strongly to the song about someone going to KFC and accidentally ordering a Big Mac.

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Thu Oct 28 2021
5

I have been known to be wildly inconsistent with my reactions to expensive items. I will happily overpay for a pair of jeans, and later that same day bemoan the state of the world when an ice-cream costs a fiver, despite both items having a similar manufacturing cost. My biggest blind spot in terms of this is with prostitutes. In Amsterdam I will greedily piss away thousands on the women in the windows, but when I'm in Barnsley, I wouldn't pay a tenner for a handjob. Even though it all leads to the same result. What I'm trying to say is, Run DMC are really good value for money. I think.

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Tue Mar 02 2021
5

The cover of Walk This Way charted higher than Aerosmith's original and is one of the most important and pivotal tracks in hip-hop history and I would gladly give this album 8 stars if I could for that track alone. Also I wish the honkies that run this thing would give us more rap and hip-hop.

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Fri Jan 29 2021
5

Finally a non-rock album, feels like I've been waiting so long. This shit is classic, every song on here is catchy af. This is the kinda shit I was waiting for.

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Thu Oct 28 2021
4

What a four track run Peter Piper, It's Tricky, My Adidas and Walk This Way is. I needed a little sit down after that. The rest of the album, as good as it is, is a bit underwhelming in comparison.

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Wed Feb 10 2021
5

These guys are also absolute pioneers of an entire genre and played a key role in bringing it to the mainstream, with some of the tracks from this album at the heart of that. Some people might say inventing rap/rock was perhaps not the greatest gift to music 😂 but the impact of their cover of Walk This Way is immeasurable. Plus it's pure vibes as a listening experience! 9/10

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Wed Feb 10 2021
3

Thought I’d love this album but for some reason it fell short of expectations. A few really great tracks in there - It’s Tricky, My Adidas, Walk this Way - but ultimately the other tracks just blended into one another. I’ve always felt with Run DMC that if you’ve heard one of their tracks you’ve heard them all. I get their importance in hip hop and you wouldn’t have bands such as The Beastie Boys without them, but I’d just rather listen to the Beastie Boys. Pioneers no doubt, but there’s a reason I’ve never really listened to a full Run DMC album before.

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Wed Jan 27 2021
5

Fucking classic. Just a legendary album with many iconic tracks.

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Thu Feb 25 2021
5

A classic, defining album in hip hop history. One of the first mainstream albums that lead us to hip hop as we know it today. Wonderful MCs with masterful production from two of the best to ever do it.

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Wed Nov 10 2021
5

If there’s anything to bring me back to a 9 y/o version of myself skateboarding, shoplifting, and trespassing it’s this album.

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Wed Nov 17 2021
4

Such a fun and cheesy romp. I see why this is such a historical album, kicking of hip hops golden age. Great rhymes and lyrics, and even better beats. The only issue I have with it is the fact that it’s a little too samey throughout, in regards to flow in particular. Hats off to Aerosmith for showing up and playing their own sample and joining in on the fun, too. Baller move.

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Sun Jun 06 2021
5

Run DMC had been making waves already, but this is the album that helped them and Hip Hop cross-over to the mainstream. Loaded with iconic tracks, and oozing with swagger, this is a must for old school Hip Hop.

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Wed Jun 09 2021
5

10/10 energy. So many iconic samples that have been lifted from this album that your memory will recall throughout. So ahead of its time.

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Fri Nov 12 2021
5

Here's another one that I could write paragraphs about. This album, along with Licensed to Ill and LL's BAD, were the foundation for my love for hip hop. I'm certain that I'm far from alone there as Raising Hell was the first platinum hip hop album and with the smash success of the Walk This Way crossover. For me, this album is as much about Jay's DJing and Rick Rubin's production as it is the rhymes. Granted, they lean heavily on the hard guitar riffs but once again it's a case of "is too much of a great thing a bad thing?" Along with the commercial breakthrough legacy of this album it's also a landmark transition from earlier 80s hip-hop in how clean and precise the production and scratching is. Compare and contrast to Paid in Full, for example. It's an 80s style but still easily holds up today. Four undeniable classics right at the top, along with the title track later, lead the way in making this an easy top 5-10 hip-hop album of the 80s. In fairness, some of the later tracks don't stand out as much on their own but that's a hard ask when up against so many hits. Still solid enough to hold it all together. It has to be a 4-4.5 for the music, but for influence and legacy, sentimentality, and personal enjoyment this is a slam dunk 5 for me.

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Sat Nov 27 2021
5

This feels so iconic. I love the minimalist Rick Rubin production. A lot of the time the tracks dispense with anything more than beats and just let the MCs do their thing. "Walk This Way" was the big breakthrough, crossover hit, but the album is full of other tunes that pack just as much punch. The lyrics are still echoed in hip hop.

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Mon Mar 07 2022
5

First Hip hop/rap I ever owned. Been a while since I listen to the entire album. It's still awesome and yes this album everyone needs to listen to.

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Sat Mar 18 2023
5

Such a great album. Loaded with classics. A must own of the genre in my opinion.

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Tue May 23 2023
5

It's funny that "Perfection" is the track that keeps this from having an absolutely flawless Side A. That said, it's not flawed enough to lower the rating. To me, this album is Run-DMC's finest. "Dumb Girl" hasn't aged well, but this is still a certified classic.

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Tue Mar 05 2024
5

So in the summer of 2023, Aerosmith announced their final tour would be held later that year… I bought tickets, as I had seen them 10-12 times over the years going back to 1978… Anyways, I decided to Audible a biography about them in advance of the show, and downloaded “Walk This Way” by Geoff Edgers, and off I went… Unfortunately, I chose the WRONG “Walk This Way” biography – as I wanted the one by Stephen Davis – but I listened to it anyway… Long story short, the Edgers book was basically the story of how Rick Rubin (i.e. the producer of “Raising Hell”) was able to convince RUN-DMC & Aerosmith to collaborate on the “Raising Hell” album via the track “Walk This Way”. You get some decent background about both bands, some good background about Rubin, especially his early years @ NYU – and the story behind how that song came to be on that album… Obviously, that is the epic track on “Raising Hell”, and what I found fascinating in the book, was that Rubin felt the album would not be anywhere near as successful without “Walk This Way” – and that neither Aerosmith – who had really hit the skids by then, had no interest in doing it, and neither did RUN-DMC… But Rubin was able to get RUN-DMC, Steven Tyler, and Joe Perry in the studio for one evening to try and pull it off… RUN-DMC knowing this would be happening, didn’t even bother to learn the lyrics, and Tyler & Perry were still using, less than enthusiastic… BTW – Rubin didn’t tell the rest of Aerosmith – as he just wanted to the 2 main guys – which is why the drum part is pretty pedestrian, and why the rest of the band was pissed once they found out about it… Anyways – for a couple of artists who were struggling at the time, who came into the session with some seriously bad attitudes, Rubin was able to get what he wanted – and he was absolutely right about that song “making the album”… As for the album, Side 1 is absolutely stunning with the run of “Peter Piper”, “It’s Tricky”, “My Adidas”, & “Walk This Way” – and is truly the heart of the album… “It’s Live” is decent, but “Perfection” is nothing special… As for Side 2, things start out strong again with “Hit & Run”, and the title track – “Raising Hell” as both are quite excellent – but things start to lose a lot of steam from that point on… That said, that’s 6 out of 12 tracks that I really enjoyed, and of course the magic of Rubin’s “Walk This Way” being the centerpiece of the album – exactly as he had imagined it… Not a rap guy by any measure, but this is an excellent album… Would probably give it a 4.25 based on the actual song quality (i.e. although it is interesting when you check Wiki, that Simmons & McDaniels are only credited with writing 2 of the 12 tracks – so not sure what other magic Rubin may have worked back then…), but given the cross-over break-thru of “Walk This Way” and it’s historical significance – I gotta give this album a 5 – and I don’t give very many of those…

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Mon Jun 28 2021
4

Amazing bars, wordplay, and arrangements define this LP. An absolute blast to listen to.

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Sun Aug 22 2021
4

Oh man the drum machines on this! Especially the 808s! The interplay of the MCs sounds a little dated now but if you think about it that'd be hard as hell to pull off - like constantly doing alley-oops on the basketball court.

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Wed Sep 08 2021
4

Oh yeah, this was pretty great! Sometimes listening to old school hip-hop can be a bit of a chore, as the rhymes can sound basic and dated, and the attitudes can be, uh, regressive, but this still sounded pretty fresh! I guess the amount of rock music being sampled (and the Aerosmith collab) make this much more accessible to my goblin-pale ass. In the version of the album I listened to there was a bonus track of them recording a commercial for some live dates, and they refer to themself as "Rap n' Roll", and YES, that's a great label! Fave track - all the singles were great - also liked "Proud to be Black" for the Tubman reference!

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Sat Nov 27 2021
4

Energiskt, och låter före sin tid. Aldrig tråkigt.

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Tue Dec 07 2021
4

The first thing to strike the contemporary listener is how antiquated the album sounds. I mean this neither as condemnation nor praise, but just observation. It sounds exactly how a major hip-hop act would sound in 1986. So, with that qualifier, the album is still rather fun. The shared duties and alternations between the lads still delights. Easily a 4-starrer. However, there isn't quite a sense of flow between the songs. Raising Hell feels more like a collection of songs than a cohesive album. This is not a flaw per se, but I can't declare it a masterpiece.

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Mon Dec 13 2021
4

Classic old-school Hip-Hop Rock, most songs have a fairly simple hook or lyric but the verses are where they really shine. I never realized how much Beastie Boyz picked up from Run DMC, the influence is super obvious here. Raising Hell stood out, that was a great tune. Good mix of goofy tunes with some serious punchy ones.

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Tue Dec 21 2021
4

YES! Montag morgen, am Weg in die Arbeit, irgendwie war ich bissl schneller! Bei denen reichts auch einfach wenn nur die drums und das gerappe sind. Macht einfach voll Spaß!

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Thu Dec 23 2021
4

Kaikki isot hitit, hyvin kulkee vaikka selkeä oman aikansa levy.

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Mon Jul 18 2022
4

Man, that's just good. The only reason it doesn't rate a five is because the beats get REALLY repetitive when listening to a whole album. But every track, taken by itself, is a banger.

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Sat Mar 25 2023
4

One of the most iconic rap albums of all time with an almost incalculable influence spanning both genres and decades. Admittedly, it does sound a tad dated given what is being made today, but all modern rap music must pay homage to the OG's who paved the way. A wildly original style for the time. Although it may sound a little dorky for today's standards, there isn't much to not like. 4/5

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Wed May 03 2023
4

More like “Light Jog-DMC”. This album is great for cleaning your sunglasses, as you inevitably leave a smudge and have to redo it. In all honesty, it was actually pretty good…illin’ you could say. I enjoyed the heavy drums, guitar riffs and scratches on quite a few songs, as well as the beat boxing on my fav track, Hit It Run. The most notable aspect of this kind of rap is the unison on the last lyric of the bar. Where one of them sings the line and then they all yell the last word. Classic. Was more of a novelty listen for me than anything. Was very cool to get a sense for what mid-80s rap was all about. That said, I wouldn’t necessarily revisit this on the reg. It’s tricky because you gotta give props to the trailblazers. They earn an extra star because they made an Aerosmith song better than the original. Aerosmith sucks.

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Tue Jul 25 2023
4

One star deducted for resurrecting Aerosmith’s career. Even with that in mind, this is just a really fun record. Hard to dislike it.

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Mon Jan 18 2021
3

Bisschen lahme Drum Machine die ganze Zeit. Das Lied mit Aerosmith ist fett

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Tue Mar 23 2021
3

3 car y'a des tracks dégueulasses

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Thu Oct 28 2021
3

An ode to the cow bell, which never fails to improve a song and here creates the impression that the boys are tap dancing around the beat. The only other punctuation is Jam Master Jay's guitarless rock beats and the boys' punched-out vocals.

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Thu Oct 28 2021
3

Ahh it's pretty good for what it is, isn't it? I'd never stick it on at home, but yeah, sound. If it was an item of furniture, it'd be a diamond encrusted lamp shade that screams "Tricky" every time you turn it on.

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Fri Oct 27 2023
3

"Walk this way" collaboration with Aerosmith and "You be illin'" are standouts.

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Sat May 22 2021
2

Unsure if just dated or really that bad. Terrible cliche lyrics and terrible production on most tracks. Truly irritating kick drum plastered over almost every track. Only gets 2 because of Get Tricky being a classic

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Sat Jan 15 2022
2

I know Run DMC is one of the most influential rap groups but I just can't stand rap "groups". Having 1 guy rap and a bunch of others help finish every sentence is just annoying as hell. And then the "music" on this album sounds like it was made on a shitty Casio keyboard using the drum beats setting. It sounds like the producer said "Let's crank up the bass drum and make the rest sound far away in an echo chamber." Bonus star only for being so influential to music.

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Sat Jan 13 2024
2

Wasn't my jam. Couple of good songs .

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Mon Jan 15 2024
1

The album didn't appeal to me either when it was released or today. Even Walk this Way together with Aerosmith doesn't change that. Farewell rap rock.

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Tue Sep 08 2020
5

Arguably THE album that shaped the path of 80s hip-hop, this is simply one of the best

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Mon Sep 21 2020
5

4.5/5. A bit samey throughout (songs blending into each other although that's certainly a curse of younger ears than the record), but this is certainly a classic. Didn't expect to really enjoy the rap-rock combination as much as I did, but it goes hard. Glad to have heard this. Standout Tracks: Peter Piper, It's Tricky, Hit It Run, Raising Hell

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Wed Jan 13 2021
5

True classic. Att den fortfarande funkar efter 35 år är magi.

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Tue Jan 12 2021
5

jo geht, kannte tatsächlich schon ein paar der Lieder und die sind auch echt vibes. Aber so ganz 100% überzeugt bin ich nicht.

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Mon May 31 2021
5

I forgot how high energy they are.

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Thu Feb 25 2021
5

Another album that I've never heard all the way through. I've already stated that hip hop isn't normally in my wheelhouse, but this one is objectively great and definitely deserves a place on this list. 5 stars.

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Thu Feb 04 2021
5

Such a fun album! Brings back so many memories! Loved it.

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Thu Jan 14 2021
5

OK sounds like tiktok cringe tok

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Wed Jan 20 2021
5

Rap rock at its finest and most innovative

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Tue Apr 27 2021
5

One of the great early rap albums. You Be Illin' is one of the earliest songs I remember listening to, and Walk This Way is just an insane rock/rap crossover. These guys are just having a shit ton of fun, and it really shows Already Saved: It's Tricky, Walk This Way, You Be Illin' Saved After Listening: Is It Live, Raising Hell

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Wed Feb 10 2021
5

love that shit. great fun. love when they go back and forth on like every other word. it's tricky will always be a bop

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Mon Feb 15 2021
5

first album renerated here, was listening to this the other day

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Tue Mar 02 2021
5

Great album, tricky a good example of the overlaying vocals shouting over each other

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Fri May 28 2021
5

27th May 2021 Listened on a cycle in to the understudy to meet Douggie. Turned up on time but he's late. Late 80s rap and hip hop? 5 stars all the way.

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Mon May 24 2021
5

Loved it. Definitely going back for future listens.

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Wed May 26 2021
5

Top-5 songs are great, tails off after that

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Tue Jun 08 2021
5

Run DMC is on fire. Lyrics are so smooth, both MCs are locked in. JamMasyer Jay's beats are incredible. Flow is good for album choices. Great classic rap/hip hop group and album.

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Sun May 16 2021
5

I had never listened to rap or hip hop before, so I was skeptical about this one. I decided to start out with the s/t before this album, and I pleasantly surprised by how enjoyable the experience was. I ended up listening to early hip hop all day! This a must-listen for sure and I'll keep going back to this one. Peter Piper has some of the most creative and imaginative lyrics I've heard. It's Tricky is catchy and can jam to. My Adidas started off the partnerships with shoe brands. Walk This Way made hip hop mainstream (and re-popularized Aerosmith). All the other songs have their highlights. Hit It Run has interesting edits, Raising Hell is a banger, Proud to be Black is a powerful commentary, and You Be Illin is a humorous tie-in. It's a fun album that sets a direct tone and impact on the audience. There's a bit here and there for everyone.

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Tue Sep 07 2021
5

You can't love rap without loving RUN DMC. This album represents the best of RUN DMCs smart lyrics and seemless flow. Walk this Way may be the best Rap/Rock collaboration of all time.

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Mon Sep 13 2021
5

Un buen disco q me trae varios recuerdos! de películas series etc

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Mon Oct 04 2021
5

I listened to this tape nonstop for a while as a kid. Peter Piper still holds up, as do many of the other tracks (Run's House!). So good.

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Tue Oct 12 2021
5

Great album, loved every song, from hugely famous (walk this way) to the fun ones (you be illin) to the serious ones (proud to be black). Proper hip hop, still relevant today. Love it love it love it!

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Tue Nov 23 2021
5

Had a great time listening to this. Have always loved the Walk This Way, It's Tricky, and You Be Illin'. Great to hear the rest of this classic. Super fun.

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Tue Nov 23 2021
5

I love this album. I have listened to it recently independent of this project. It full of fun raps and DJing. Nostalgic, yes, but also just fun.

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Tue Nov 23 2021
5

This album is so iconic and influential that I have to remind myself sometimes it's not a parody. "Not bad meaning bad, but bad meaning good!" "It's Tricky" is a song I rediscovered a few years back and has been in my playlists since. So fun. "Walk This Way" has had such an influence on music since it came out that it's hard to remember how novel it was back in the day. "Perfection" has what might be my favorite lyrics ever in a rap: "I got prescription glasses and my eyes are correct/ Two times every year I go to have them checked." "You Be Illin'" is the one I listened to multiple times. I love the sound and the humor. I loved the beatboxing, the scratching, the beats. This is where it all became a Big Thing.

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Mon Dec 06 2021
5

The album that brought hip-hop out of the cities and into nationwide attention. An undeniable classic.

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Tue Dec 14 2021
5

Styles have changed, but they're the OG

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Tue Dec 21 2021
5

Ebenso minimalistisch wie auf den Punkt - haut total rein. Was für beats und tighte raps - und mehr ist es (und braucht es) auch nicht. Da kann man nicht nicht furiously mit dem Kopf nicken. Sogar erste Cross Over Anleihen in einem sonst so old-school hip hop album. Wow. Key Tracks: Tricky, Walk this way, peter piper, dumb girl (LOL)

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Fri Jan 07 2022
5

I wish I had more time to write this review. An easy 5, fun, catchy, and also some political moments. Great album!

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Sat Jan 08 2022
5

An absolute classic of Hip-hop, with songs that remain well-known even today.

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Sun Jan 09 2022
5

Almost every song was 5/5 and the album as a whole was both fun and great sources of nostalgia. I loved the pace of their rapping - it’s clever wordplay that I can understand.

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Fri Jan 21 2022
5

I have, of course, heard this before x

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Fri Jan 21 2022
5

Hip-hop. Dos megahits. Venga, le pongo un 5 por la que tienen con Aerosmith.

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Fri Jan 21 2022
5

Absolute bangers. Not a fan of “Perfection” and “Hit and Run” but the rest are so much fun!!!

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Thu Jan 27 2022
5

I LOVE THAT RAP <3 5/5 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AND AEROSMITH <3 <3 <3 I FUCKING LOVE THEM!!!

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Mon Feb 07 2022
5

Still awesome from start to finish.

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Wed Feb 09 2022
5

A Hip Hop classic to kick things off…

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Tue Feb 15 2022
5

This record is great! It's a symbol of its period, with most of Run DMCs most known songs. The beatbox tracks are so cool! A must listen!

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Mon Feb 21 2022
5

As the songs says, Perfection.

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Sat Mar 05 2022
5

Great album, loved every song, from the hugely famous ones (it's tricky, walk this way, my adidas) to the fun ones (you be illin') to the serious ones (proud to be black). Proper hip hop, still relevant today. Love it love it love it!

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