Wednesday, May 11, 2022

X Clan - To The East, Blackwards LP


4th & B'way (1990)

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 had the second X Clan album Xodus.  I really dug it, though would occasionally get fed up with Professor X's Emo Phillips style delivery.  I knew some of the singles from their first album from Yo! MTV Raps, but I never owned it until now.  

This one was a little tougher to track down than Xodus.  I got Xodus on Discogs for about twenty dollars and it was still sealed.  For To The East, Blackwards I had to hunt for a while to find a copy that was in good condition and was an affordable price.  I assume because this album seems to be the more popular and fondly remembered of their two records.  I'm not sure I would agree with that ranking, but I do know it's a great record.

I think the reason I would give the edge to Xodus rests solely on the production.  The bar of hip hop production was raised by such an incredible amount between 1990 and 1992.  X Clan followed suit and Xodus has beats that I think sound fuller and are more interesting.  But that's not to take anything away from this record.  Judging by 1990 standards, the beats are pretty great.  Brother J just tears it apart every time he touches a mic and Professor X's random interjections are pretty entertaining.

Considering some of the more obscure hip hip records that have been rereleased in recent years, I'm pretty surprised no one has touched X Clan yet.  Maybe the rights are tied up in some annoying conglomerate, but I think both of their records are deserving of wider availability.

X Clan - To The East, Blackwards:

No comments:

Post a Comment