1991, Music

A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing (1991) by Black Sheep

I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard at a hip hop track as I did on my first listen to “U Mean I’m Not.” There aren’t that many songs from other genres I think I’ve laughed that hard at, actually. It’s basically exactly how I feel about gangsta rap and I’m glad someone in the hip hop community felt the same way. I liked it so much that it predisposed me to like the rest of the album, even though nothing else is anywhere near as funny and though the album really drags.

As others have noted, they’re pretty immature and sex-obsessed. Sometimes it’s amusing or endearing but it often isn’t, especially as the album goes on and on and on. There are tracks that stand out as not being either, but there aren’t enough for an album that is somehow 22 tracks long (including some skits a few of which have dated very poorly).

Some people have criticized the production but I like it, even though it’s usually not as quirky or dense as I prefer. Any album that samples both Jefferson Airplane and a super deep Guess Who cut appeals to me at a level that is too deep for me to resist. (I grew up with both songs and I just can’t be rational about it.) There are some other deep ’60s samples that I didn’t immediately catch. I can’t help it, they found my catnip.

The album is way too long, though. And you really start feeling it around “La Menage” or thereabouts. No skits would help. (Well, unless you count “U Mean I’m Not” because that’s essential.) but there are definitely tracks that could be shorter and some that really don’t need to be here.

But I can’t help but give in to the goodwill engendered by making me laugh and by including samples from songs from my childhood. And there charismatic guys, even if they’re way too damn immature most of the time.


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