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The soundtrack from the 1998 debut film from hip-hop visionary Hype Williams consists of a hodgepodge of hip-hop and R&B. The majority of the album showcases the talent of hip-hop's heavyweights in the post-Biggie/2Pac mass-consumption era of hip-hop. The soundtrack also serves as a coming-out party for a promising next wave of MCs. The songs on the album reflect the central theme of the film: the paper chase from the disenfranchised point of view and the treacherous road to the riches that ensues. The opening track, "No Way in, No Way Out" by R. Kelly project Lady, is an R&B rendering of this central theme. The soulful D'Angelo builds poignantly on this theme with his defiant anthem "Devil's Pie," produced by the spellbinding DJ Premier. Aside from two R&B ballads (including a decent remake of Stevie Wonder's "Never Dreamed You'd Leave in Summer" by Bad Boy wunderkind Jerome), the remainder of the album features a number of blazing hip-hop tracks with fierce, sinister beats and hardcore MCs committing verbal murder. On "Grand Finale," the three male stars of the film (DMX, Method Man, and Nas) team up with the growling Ja Rule for a skills exhibition over a fiery composition. DMX gets versatile on "Top Shotter," using his rabid flow over a dancehall rhythm with assists from raggamuffins Mr. Vegas and Sean Paul. Ja Rule goes solo on the icy "Story to Tell." Jay-Z collaborates with his Roc-A-Fella protégés Beanie Sigel and Memphis Bleek on "Crew Love." The Wu-Tang Clan chime in with the eerie "Windpipe" and Noreaga wistfully laments the loss of loved ones on the moving "Sometimes." The LOX and Made Men grab listeners by the throat on "Tommy's Theme" and the final cut, "I Wanna Live" by NAS' entourage Bravehearts, encapsulates the social Darwinistic themes of the film and soundtrack. Overall, a solid album.

Product Details

Release Date: 11/03/1998
Label: Def Jam
UPC: 0731455892529
catalogNumber: 558925
Rank: 41307

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Gang Starr   Track Performer
Maze   Track Performer
Nas   Track Performer
R. Kelly   Keyboards,Background Vocals
Percy Bady   Keyboards
Gordon Chambers   Background Vocals
D'Angelo   Track Performer
DMX   Track Performer
Tony Kelly   Multi Instruments
RZA   Track Performer
Ol' Dirty Bastard   Track Performer
Method Man   Track Performer
Wu-Tang Clan   Track Performer
7even   Bass
Raekwon   Rap,Track Performer
Anthony Harmon   Bass Guitar
Cynthia Jernigan   Background Vocals
Ghostface Killah   Track Performer
Jay-Z   Track Performer
Andy Katz   Vocals
LOX   Track Performer
Lil Rob   Multi Instruments
Mya   Vocals,Background Vocals
Sparkle   Background Vocals
Noreaga   Rap
Sauce Money   Track Performer
Vegas   Track Performer
Kendall D. Nesbitt   Keyboards,Background Vocals
Greg Landfair   Guitar
Sean Paul   Track Performer
Chandra Crawford   Background Vocals
Ja Rule   Vocals,Rap,Track Performer
Memphis Bleek   Track Performer
Made Men   Track Performer
Half-A-Mill   Track Performer
Beanie Sigel   Track Performer
Drag-On   Track Performer
Braveheart's   Track Performer
MYZ   Track Performer
Hot Totti   Track Performer
Jerome   Track Performer
Roy "Royalty" Hamilton   Background Vocals
Lady   Track Performer

Technical Credits

Guru   Producer
R. Kelly   Producer
S. Barnes   Composer
Gordon Chambers   Producer
Sean "Puffy" Combs   Producer
DJ Premier   Producer
M. Ennis   Composer
Troy Hightower   Engineer
Rich Keller   Engineer
Tony Kelly   Producer,Engineer
RZA   Engineer
Ed Raso   Engineer
Eddie Sancho   Engineer
R. Scott   Composer
Larry Sturm   Programming,Engineer
Tommy Uzzo   Engineer
Kenny Ortíz   Engineer
Tone   Producer
Stan Wood   Programming,Engineer
Stephen George   Programming,Engineer
Jay-Z   Composer
Hype   Executive Producer
Poke   Producer
Chris Brickley   Engineer
Spencer Bellamy   Producer
Irv Gotti   Producer,Executive Producer
D. Trotman   Producer
Lil Rob   Producer
Sound Boy   Engineer
Knobody   Producer
Lyor Cohen   Executive Producer
Anthony Kilhoffer   Programming,Engineer
Swizz Beatz   Producer
Grease   Producer,Engineer
Patrick Viala   Engineer
Dragon Cacinovic Chajch   Engineer
Jon Silver   Engineer
Nastee   Engineer
Hangmen 3   Producer
Jayson Phillips   Composer
M. Epps   Composer
Roy "Royalty" Hamilton   drum programming
J. Jones   Composer
Kasseem Dean   Composer

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Belly 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Every last song on this CD is Hot. This whole Cd keeps your head bouncin'.