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CD$10.49

Hip-Hop/Rap - Released January 1, 2002 | Interscope

Like a few other notable sophomore records from hip-hop acts (De La Soul Is Dead, The Low End Theory), Jurassic 5's Power in Numbers is darker than their first full-length; not as fresh and exuberant, but much more mature and intelligent. Granted, fans may not be happy to hear they've changed the formula so soon, or that the production doesn't play a starring role as it did on Quality Control. Instead, DJ Nu-Mark and Cut Chemist play it close to the vest, setting off the rhymes with a few well-placed beats and split-second samples (as well as the usual flute loops). Of course, allowing more room to hear four of the best rappers in hip-hop twisting tongues and telling tales has to be welcomed, and Jurassic 5 prove up to the added responsibility. Displaying a focus and intensity basically unseen in rap music during the past decade, the group practically bursts with message tracks; the skeletal first single "Freedom" finds Chali 2na and Akil delving into the concept as it relates to everything from Third World poverty to the American penitentiary system. "Remember His Name" and "Thin Line" (the latter with Nelly Furtado) are dark tales of urban passions, and they're a step forward in that it's not just the raps that are intricate, but the storytelling also requires a few listens to understand. The group still has plenty of time for a few old-school anthems like "What's Golden" and "A Day at the Races," with Big Daddy Kane bringing his alliterative ammo to the track. And the instrumental jam "Acetate Prophets" shows DJ Nu-Mark and Cut Chemist refining their skill for merging turntablism and excellent productions. Perhaps the best statement of Jurassic 5's purpose comes from the group itself, on "If You Only Knew": "What we do is try to give you what you ain't used to." © John Bush /TiVo
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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released February 6, 2008 | Mass Appeal

Clocking in at only half the running time of your average rap album circa 1997, Jurassic 5's debut was the most refreshing hip-hop release of the year, and not just because it abandoned the epic-length concepts of the rap mainstream. With old-school vibes to spare, excellent rhythmatic raps, and the production genius of Cut Chemist and DJ Nu-Mark, EP finally delivered on all the diverse talents promised by the growing hip-hop underground. "Jayou" is a flute-loop classic, and "Concrete Schoolyard" has that nostalgic "can it all be so simple" vibe so rarely heard from hip-hop. Interspersed with the songs are instrumentals, usually laced with the most obscure samples a veteran crate-digger could hope to shovel up, including an instructional record that listed definitions of common science terms and another that pointed out the absurdity of playing Led Zeppelin next to Frank Sinatra. This, of course, was what the group naturally did (it was actually Sinatra over Zeppelin), on "Lesson 6: The Lecture," titled in tribute to Steinski.) Here then was the answer for the legion of rap fans hoping to hear the same top-rank rapping that major labels often featured, along with the edgy productions and DJing that turntablists made standard. It was the perfect balance of quality and experimentation, all delivered in a slim 20 minutes. © John Bush /TiVo
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Pop - Released January 1, 2000 | Interscope

In June 2000, almost seven years after their formation, underground rap's most lauded crew finally hit with a full-length. Great expectations aside, Quality Control hits all the same highs as Jurassic 5's excellent EP of three years earlier, stretching out their résumé to nearly an hour with a few turntablist jaunts from resident beat-jugglers DJ Nu-Mark and Cut Chemist. The formula is very similar to the EP, with the group usually going through a couple of lines of five-man harmonics before splitting off for tongue-twister solos from Zaakir, Chali 2na, Akil, and Marc 7even. As expected, there are plenty of nods to old-school rap, from "Lausd," with its brief tribute to hip-hop classic "The Bridge" by MC Shan, to "Monkey Bars," where the group claim inspiration (yet just a bit of distance) from their heroes: "Now you know us but it's not the Cold Crush, four MCs so it ain't the Furious/Not the Force M.D.'s or the three from Treacherous, it's a blast from the past from the moment we bust." Where Quality Control really laps previous Jurassic 5 material is not only the lyrical material, though, but the themes and focus of the message tracks "Lausd," "World of Entertainment (Woe Is Me)," and "Contribution." The four-man crew take on major media and the responsibilities of adulthood with a degree of authority, eloquence, and compassion never before heard in rap music. (Just check out the lyrics to any of the above three at an online archive like www.ohhla.com.) Though critics and uptight rap purists might fault them for not pushing the progression angle enough, Jurassic 5's rhymes are so devastating and the productions (by Nu-Mark and Cut Chemist) follow the raps so closely it certainly doesn't matter whether the group is old-school or not. © John Bush /TiVo
CD$10.49

Pop - Released January 1, 2000 | Interscope

In June 2000, almost seven years after their formation, underground rap's most lauded crew finally hit with a full-length. Great expectations aside, Quality Control hits all the same highs as Jurassic 5's excellent EP of three years earlier, stretching out their résumé to nearly an hour with a few turntablist jaunts from resident beat-jugglers DJ Nu-Mark and Cut Chemist. The formula is very similar to the EP, with the group usually going through a couple of lines of five-man harmonics before splitting off for tongue-twister solos from Zaakir, Chali 2na, Akil, and Marc 7even. As expected, there are plenty of nods to old-school rap, from "Lausd," with its brief tribute to hip-hop classic "The Bridge" by MC Shan, to "Monkey Bars," where the group claim inspiration (yet just a bit of distance) from their heroes: "Now you know us but it's not the Cold Crush, four MCs so it ain't the Furious/Not the Force M.D.'s or the three from Treacherous, it's a blast from the past from the moment we bust." Where Quality Control really laps previous Jurassic 5 material is not only the lyrical material, though, but the themes and focus of the message tracks "Lausd," "World of Entertainment (Woe Is Me)," and "Contribution." The four-man crew take on major media and the responsibilities of adulthood with a degree of authority, eloquence, and compassion never before heard in rap music. (Just check out the lyrics to any of the above three at an online archive like www.ohhla.com.) Though critics and uptight rap purists might fault them for not pushing the progression angle enough, Jurassic 5's rhymes are so devastating and the productions (by Nu-Mark and Cut Chemist) follow the raps so closely it certainly doesn't matter whether the group is old-school or not. © John Bush /TiVo
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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released January 1, 2006 | Interscope

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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released January 1, 2006 | Interscope

Leading up to the release of Feedback, Jurassic 5 rapper Soup distanced his group from the rap underground that had embraced his music, but apparently had not paid enough of his bills. "It's a step up for us because we have been basically known as an underground group.... We've been known as a backpacker group." Indeed, after years of bringing their live show to thousands of scattered festival-goers (Lollapalooza, Warped, Bonnaroo, Reading), the group reached for the same type of commercialized sweet spot that had made Black Eyed Peas one of the hottest things in rap during the mid-2000s. That doesn't mean more sex, but it does mean more anthems, more featured appearances, and more sounds from the contemporary rap charts. With producer Cut Chemist gone for a solo production career, the group focused heavily on their other in-house source, DJ Nu-Mark, who contributes an opener in "Back 4 U" that makes it sound as though nothing has changed in the Jurassic camp. His pair of Sugar Hill tributes later in the album ("Radio," "In the House") end up being highlights of the album, not because they're stellar, but because the outside producers come up short so often. Interscope may have sprung for some of the most expensive for-hire producers -- Scott Storch (famous for 50 Cent, T.I., Lil' Kim, and the Roots) and Salaam Remi (Fugees, Nas, Ludacris, Joss Stone) -- but any savvy listener can go right down the track listing and match nearly every production to the source that prompted it. "Baby Please" is a horn-led Neptunes rewrite, "Gotta Understand" a signature Kanye West production (complete with Curtis Mayfield's sampled crooning), and "Get It Together" tries to capitalize on the fad of catchy whistling hooks already defined by Juelz Santana's "There It Go! (The Whistle Song)." The first single, a sunny singalong titled "Work It Out," has the contributions of the Dave Matthews Band. Against productions this commercialized, Jurassic's top-notch rhymers -- Chali 2na, Soup, Akil -- usually end up spitting rhymes already familiar to listeners of their earlier work. © John Bush /TiVo
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Rock - Released July 7, 2017 | Interscope

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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released September 15, 2009 | Up Above Records

CD$10.49

Hip-Hop/Rap - Released January 1, 2002 | Interscope

Like a few other notable sophomore records from hip-hop acts (De La Soul Is Dead, The Low End Theory), Jurassic 5's Power in Numbers is darker than their first full-length; not as fresh and exuberant, but much more mature and intelligent. Granted, fans may not be happy to hear they've changed the formula so soon, or that the production doesn't play a starring role as it did on Quality Control. Instead, DJ Nu-Mark and Cut Chemist play it close to the vest, setting off the rhymes with a few well-placed beats and split-second samples (as well as the usual flute loops). Of course, allowing more room to hear four of the best rappers in hip-hop twisting tongues and telling tales has to be welcomed, and Jurassic 5 prove up to the added responsibility. Displaying a focus and intensity basically unseen in rap music during the past decade, the group practically bursts with message tracks; the skeletal first single "Freedom" finds Chali 2na and Akil delving into the concept as it relates to everything from Third World poverty to the American penitentiary system. "Remember His Name" and "Thin Line" (the latter with Nelly Furtado) are dark tales of urban passions, and they're a step forward in that it's not just the raps that are intricate, but the storytelling also requires a few listens to understand. The group still has plenty of time for a few old-school anthems like "What's Golden" and "A Day at the Races," with Big Daddy Kane bringing his alliterative ammo to the track. And the instrumental jam "Acetate Prophets" shows DJ Nu-Mark and Cut Chemist refining their skill for merging turntablism and excellent productions. Perhaps the best statement of Jurassic 5's purpose comes from the group itself, on "If You Only Knew": "What we do is try to give you what you ain't used to." © John Bush /TiVo
CD$12.99

Hip-Hop/Rap - Released January 1, 2006 | Interscope

Leading up to the release of Feedback, Jurassic 5 rapper Soup distanced his group from the rap underground that had embraced his music, but apparently had not paid enough of his bills. "It's a step up for us because we have been basically known as an underground group.... We've been known as a backpacker group." Indeed, after years of bringing their live show to thousands of scattered festival-goers (Lollapalooza, Warped, Bonnaroo, Reading), the group reached for the same type of commercialized sweet spot that had made Black Eyed Peas one of the hottest things in rap during the mid-2000s. That doesn't mean more sex, but it does mean more anthems, more featured appearances, and more sounds from the contemporary rap charts. With producer Cut Chemist gone for a solo production career, the group focused heavily on their other in-house source, DJ Nu-Mark, who contributes an opener in "Back 4 U" that makes it sound as though nothing has changed in the Jurassic camp. His pair of Sugar Hill tributes later in the album ("Radio," "In the House") end up being highlights of the album, not because they're stellar, but because the outside producers come up short so often. Interscope may have sprung for some of the most expensive for-hire producers -- Scott Storch (famous for 50 Cent, T.I., Lil' Kim, and the Roots) and Salaam Remi (Fugees, Nas, Ludacris, Joss Stone) -- but any savvy listener can go right down the track listing and match nearly every production to the source that prompted it. "Baby Please" is a horn-led Neptunes rewrite, "Gotta Understand" a signature Kanye West production (complete with Curtis Mayfield's sampled crooning), and "Get It Together" tries to capitalize on the fad of catchy whistling hooks already defined by Juelz Santana's "There It Go! (The Whistle Song)." The first single, a sunny singalong titled "Work It Out," has the contributions of the Dave Matthews Band. Against productions this commercialized, Jurassic's top-notch rhymers -- Chali 2na, Soup, Akil -- usually end up spitting rhymes already familiar to listeners of their earlier work. © John Bush /TiVo