Mobb Deep: Mobb Muzik
Mobb Muzik (Loud)
Reviewed by Christopher Gray, Fri., Sept. 10, 1999
Mobb Muzik (Loud)Finally -- a hip-hop album the whole family can enjoy! Now before you all go rushing off to Best Buy or Music Mania to secure this for your pre-adolescent cousin/niece/nephew, bear in mind that's "family" as in Gambino, not Barney. More Scorcese than Sesame Street, Mobb Muzik opens with former President Reagan vowing to "break the power of the Mob in America and nothing short of it" and spends the rest of its 72 minutes detailing how ineffectual the old coot's promise truly was. Swapping stark tales of street knowledge with Nas, Kool G Rap, Raekwon, Eightball, Lil' Cease, and Cormega, Mobb Deep's Prodigy and Havoc burrow deep within the urban nightmare, occasionally pausing to ponder the dead-end aspect of it all, but mostly marinating in the reality of the famous Dead Kennedys' phone call, "Hey Dad! I'm in jail! And I like it!" Most of the regret is left to the musical side, surfacing in the album's many mournful piano loops and meditative minor-key samples. Flowing like lava down the side of a Filipino volcano, the Queensbridge MCs spit narratives that don't offer much immediate hope for a declining crime rate but sure are a blast to play PlayStation to. For some reason, Loud Records sent out review copies purged of all the naughty words, but the effect is like an episode of The Sopranos edited for network TV. Mobb Muzik is definitely rated R: for real.