Drums, Drums, DRUMS! BDP's debut album is raw-sounding now, but was revolutionary in 1987, bringing dancehall out of the New York underground and into the hip-hop mainstream. "South Bronx" is the Pelon anthem, and KRS's legendary MC Shan/Marley Marl dis "The Bridge is Over" carries the torch, answering "The Bridge" and settling the Bronx vs. Queens debate ("Manhattan keeps on makin it, Brooklyn keeps on takin it, Bronx keeps creatin it and Queens keeps on faking it!"). "Super-Hoe" has the super-duty tough drums that backpackers rediscovered in '99 when Blackstar combined the Super-Hoe drums with the "P is Free" remix's Diseases riddim sample to make "Definition." "Criminal Minded" is another banger - it's hard to imagine what hip-hop would sound like now without Scott La Rock's contributions back then. The LP would be perfect except for the ACDC sample on "Dope Beat"- were they trying to make a "Walk this Way" type crossover record? (ed. note: we actually like this track). Still, Criminal Minded quickly became the blueprint for hardcore conscious rap and it definitely makes my top ten hip-hop albums of all-time. Remastered double LP version, housed in beautiful gatefold sleeve with poster insert.
- music label: B-Boy Records 1987 / Traffic Entertainment
reviewed by Ayres