Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Kurious - A Constipated Monkey 2xLP


Amalgam (2007, Reissue)

Every Wednesday, in honor of Ed Lover Dance Day from Yo! MTV Raps, I take a break from rock and roll to write a little bit about hip hop. In the late 80s and early 90s hip hop ruled my musical life. During this often called 'Golden Era' I discovered so much incredible music. As I am slowly replacing the CDs I've had for twenty-five plus years with vinyl copies, I'm going to talk about some albums that had a really important impact on me during some very formative years.

When I was in high school, I wrote for the school newspaper.  Surprise, I mostly wrote music reviews.  I'm not sure I'm any better at writing them now than I was back then, but I have been at this for almost thirty years now in some capacity.  Reading that sentence back, I should probably be much better at this than I am.  Oh well.  The point in bringing this up is that a lot of the hip hop albums I've been writing about on Wednesdays are albums that I first wrote about when I was in high school.

If you looked at the size, location and demographics of my high school, it would be no surprise that there wasn't much of an audience from vaguely obscure hip hop albums in 1993.  That was crystalized when I reviewed this Kurious record.  One of the things that the English teachers did was they made people write letters to the editor/newspaper staff.  Only one time was one of these letters directed at me, and it was the week I wrote my review of this album.  I wish I could remember what it said word for word, but in a nutshell it said something to the effect of "Seriously Tim, A Constipated Monkey?"  There were then a few lines about how no one had ever heard of most of the stuff I liked.

It remains amusing to me that this is my strongest memory about the Kurious record.  I was kind of disappointed with it when it was initially released.  Kurious had been shouted out on several Hieroglyphics albums by this point and Casual was a guest appearance on "What's The Real."  This is one of those instances where the intervening years have been very kind to Kurious.  I think this album holds up way better than I would have predicted back in the 90s.  It's flat out great in places, particularly with the production prowess of The Beatnuts and the SD50's.

Kurious has a laid back flow and pulls off some impressive verses, but the reason the record sounds so timeless is because of the production.  I feel like this record is somewhat forgotten to the sands of time, but I am grateful that a 2xLP version was put out in 2007.  It took me a while to hunt down a copy at a reasonable price, but it's here now and it sounds great.  Even better than I thought it did in 1993.

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