It would have been hard to match the artistic success of their debut EP on a full-length recording, but Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth did just that on Mecca and the Soul Brother, and they did so in the most unlikely way of all after the succinctness of All Souled Out -- by coming up with a sprawling, nearly 80-minute-long album on which not a single song or interlude is a throwaway or a superfluous piece. Granted, 80 minutes is a long stretch of time for sustained listening, but the music is completely worthy of that time, allowing the duo to stretch out in ways that their EP rendered impossible. Again, the primary star is Pete Rock's production acumen, and he ups the ante of rock-solid drums, steady cymbal beats, smooth-rolling bass, and fatback organ, not to mention his signature horn loops. C.L. Smooth is the perfect vocal match for the music. He is maybe one of the few MCs capable of rapping a fairly credible love song, as he does on "Lots of Lovin'." "They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)," a tribute to friend and Heavy D. dancer Trouble T-Roy, who was accidentally killed, packs a poignant emotional weight, but it is Smooth's more direct and conscientious -- and frequently autobiographical -- side which ultimately carries the album lyrically. The songs are connected and the album is propelled forward by Rock's quick, soul-tight interludes; these are usually bits of old R&B and soul tunes but sometimes they're spoken pieces or spontaneous, freestyle sessions. These interludes provide a sort of dense spiritual tone and resonance in the album that is not religiously based at all, but fully hip-hop based, emerging from the urban altars that are the basements and rooftops of the city.
|Label:||Elektra / Wea|
Performance CreditsPete Rock & C.L. Smooth Primary Artist
Grand Puba Vocals
Tabitha Brace Background Vocals
Terri Robinson Background Vocals
C.L. Smooth Vocals
Pete Rock Vocals
Nevelle Hodge Keyboards
Dida & Grap Vocals
Heavy D Vocals
Technical CreditsChris Champion Engineer
Rod Hui Engineer
Large Professor Producer
Tim Patterson Creative Coordinator
C.L. Smooth Producer
Jamey Staub Engineer
Charlie Dos Santos Engineer
DJ Eddie F Executive Producer
Pete Rock Producer
Dante Ross Executive Producer
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Mecca and the Soul Brother based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
This has to be the livest hip-hop record ever. I refer to it every so often... just to make sure... and it never fails. This might have been over-shadowed in it's time by 'The Chronic', but this piece still holds up.
The perfect fusion of intelligent hip hop and jazz\soul. Pete Rock's tight horn loops are excellently matched with CL Smooth's honest lyrics and impeccable delivery. They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y) is one of the most beautiful songs ever written.
A perfect combination Pete Rock's savy beats with CL Smooth's crystal clear flow. This album is definitely a winner, hip hop classic or any other way you define great. CL' s flow is very underrated, and the production is top notch. Buy this album if you love hip hop.
This album is Great. For those of you who like jazzy tunes with soft but down lyrics you should buy this. TROY, or They Reminisce Over You is One of the greatest songs ever to come out of QUEEN's NY. For a time you could hear it being played everywhere.