September 8, 2015

Suga Free - Street Gospel (1997)


DJ Quik was still holding in 1997 and produced one hell of an album for a dope rapper named Suga Free. The album sounds older/more underground than what Quik's other production and mastering work from around this period would indicate. If you're familiar with DJ Battlecat's beats (who was of course influenced by Quik at least since their work together on the Penthouse Players Clique album in 1991), you can expect a lot of that sound on here. This doesn't lose the grimy, street level pimp aesthetic and stays real as fuck to the streets while not sounding cheap. Suga Free is a slightly wonky rapper with a falsetto vocal style comparable to Cold 187um, Bizzy Bone, or anywhere in between. His lyrics are no doubt influenced by Dangerous Crew and related bay area rappers like Ant Banks, Too Short, Goldy, and E-40 as well as his Los Angeles predecessors, Cold 187um and Above The Law. A very rhythmic, urban, and soulful pimp album that deserves your listening. If you enjoy this style of West coast rap I'd also recommend Vontel's Vision of a Dream, Battlecat's Gumbo Roots, and I.F.A.'s International Family Affair.

Sample

Street Gospel