Hip Hop groups can sometimes be a bit cringey, or maybe there will be a couple of members that aren’t up on the level of the rest.
With The Lords Of The Underground, a great synergy comes into play, the way it’s supposed to. They shout, rap, and flow, and it all sounds so natural.
“Mad Skillz” is off their classic 1993 album, Here Come The Lords. I thought about choosing “Chief Rocka”, which is by far their most famous, and to be honest probably their best song, but that would neglect some of the great tracks on that album. So I’ve gone for one which wasn’t a single.
The lyrics are basically bigging themselves up, but there’s no shortage of wordplay and putdowns. The flow is very early 90s, which is certainly distinctive. In many ways it’s a shame that the old school style has disappeared, but of course it’s important that things keep moving forward.
The production is by K-Def & Marley Marl, who aren’t part of the group. Lord Jazz is the main DJ and producer for the group, but shared production on the album with these two. It’s a slightly spaced out jam, with a slow but determined funkiness.
Of course, the golden era of hip hop, as it’s known, relied heavily on samples, and the hook here is sampled from the Jazz song “Smile, Stacey” by Stanley Turrentine. Such a nice sax riff!
They just don’t make them like this anymore…