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Ruff Ryders

Ryde Or Die Vol. 1  Hear it Now

RS: 3of 5 Stars Average User Rating: 3of 5 Stars

1999

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Last year, Ruff Ryders -- who include chart-topping DMX and his Wunderkind producer, Swizz Beats -- overthrew hip-hop's Puffy-centric status quo in a bloodless coup. Ryde or Die Vol. 1 features various crew members, plus a police lineup of hip-hop's most wanted -- Jay-Z (who benefited from Swizz Beats' production on his last album), Big Pun and Juvenile -- pounding their chests and belting out a barrage of black-fingernailed threats and phallus-grabbing call and response ("Do ya fuck 'em till they come?/Hell right we make 'em come"). Ryde also boasts a Philly fire starter named Eve, who spits intense, refreshingly couture-free rhymes. At its best (the festive "Down Bottom"), the album is pure adrenalin; at its worst ("Platinum Plus," featuring Mase and Jermaine Dupri), it's a little generic. The most convincing argument to buy it comes from Jay-Z on the catchy "Jigga My Nigga": "I don't give a fuck if I sold one or 1 million/But I think you should/'Cause if I only sold one/Then out comes the hood/The all-black and the gloves/The outcome ain't good." Maybe they should have called it "Riot or Buy."(RS 813)


KRIS EX





(Posted: May 27, 1999)

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