August 2, 2015

DJ Screw - Bigtyme Records: All Screwed Up Volume II (1995)

This is it, the legendary All Screwed Up. Hip hop heads go crazy over this, but so do people who have never listened to a full rap album in their life. It's interesting that way, but then again it isn't since Screw's music, especially on this particular set, only hangs onto the fringes of the hip hop umbrella, more inclined to create its own genre bubble of "chopped and screwed" in which DJ Screw is the only artist.

The title and cover pretty much give away what's inside this beast of a DJ remix set. Screw goes hard on some Bigtyme Records classics, the other Houston rap label (not Rap-A-Lot), which provided a home for UGK, certain South Park Coalition rappers like Point Blank and 20-2-Life, and PSK-13. Screw creates a hard-hitting, ultra psychedelic experience. I can't even guess at how he got this sound, but it's impressive to say the least. If you're familiar with Point Blank's first album, Prone To Bad Dreams, prepare yourself for the psycho, melancholy song, After I Die, stretched out to 10 minutes, chopped up and given a ton of wailing synths and pivotal crescendos and decrescendos. Fact of the matter is, Screw's interpretation of After I Die is probably at least twice as famous as the Point Blank original.

I think this tape is fantastic, but I've got to say it's my least ideal Screw mix and not one of my favorites. After listening to more of his material, I've come to the conclusion that this is way too psychedelic and not slow, blunted, and purrpy enough for my taste. I'm in the small minority though, and I accept that this is some next level shit that will become a favorite of most people, so give this a shot if you've never heard a proper chopped and screwed remix before. I'm more impressed on how universally loved this is than the actual music.


All Screwed Up