A Tribe Called Quest - Midnight Marauders (LP)

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Hip Hop, East Coast, Alternative Hip Hop, Jazz Rap
Vinyl Record LP
Artist: A Tribe Called Quest
Album: Midnight Marauders
Released: US, 2015


A1Midnight Marauders Tour Guide0:45
A2Steve Biko (Stir It Up)3:11
A3Award Tour3:46
Featuring - Trugoy The Dove
A48 Million Stories4:21
Producer - Skeff Anselm
A5Sucka Nigga4:05
Featuring - Raphael Wiggins
A7We Can Get Down4:19
B1Electric Relaxation4:04
B2Clap Your Hands3:16
B3Oh My God3:29
Featuring - Busta Rhymes
B4Keep It Rollin'3:05
Featuring - Large Professor
Producer - Large Professor
B5The Chase, Part II4:02
Featuring - Consequence
B6Lyrics To Go4:09
B7God Lives Through4:15
Recorded By, Mixed By - Tim Latham

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"Midnight Marauders," released in 1993, is a seminal album by A Tribe Called Quest, an influential group in the evolution of hip-hop. This album, following the critically acclaimed "The Low End Theory," further cements the group's legacy with its innovative blend of jazz-infused beats, socially conscious lyrics, and laid-back yet intricate flow. It's a record that not only defined the sound of early 90s hip-hop but also left a lasting impact on the genre as a whole.

The album opens with "Steve Biko (Stir It Up)," setting the stage with its blend of crisp drum loops and jazz samples. The track showcases Q-Tip and Phife Dawg's seamless interplay, a hallmark of the group's style. The song's tribute to the South African anti-apartheid activist reflects the album's broader themes of social awareness and cultural identity.

"Midnight Marauders" is renowned for its masterful use of jazz samples, a characteristic that shines through in tracks like "Award Tour." This song, one of the album's standout singles, features a catchy, soulful hook and a beat that's both smooth and compelling. The lyrics, delivered with the group's signature wit and intelligence, speak to their experiences and aspirations, resonating with listeners across different backgrounds.

The album also delves into deeper and more introspective territory with tracks like "Electric Relaxation." This song is a perfect blend of laid-back vibes and lyrical dexterity, with Q-Tip and Phife Dawg trading verses over a mellow, jazzy beat. The track epitomizes the group's ability to create music that's both thought-provoking and effortlessly cool.

"Midnight Marauders" isn't just about smooth beats and clever rhymes; it's also a platform for social commentary. Songs like "Sucka Nigga" address issues of racial identity and the use of language in the African-American community. The track is both a critique and a reflection, showcasing A Tribe Called Quest's commitment to addressing complex cultural topics in their music.

Another highlight is "Oh My God," featuring a memorable guest appearance by Busta Rhymes. The track's dynamic energy and infectious chorus demonstrate the group's ability to create catchy, yet substantive songs. The chemistry between the artists and the innovative production make it a standout track on the album.

Production-wise, "Midnight Marauders" is a testament to the group's creativity and their producer Ali Shaheed Muhammad's skill. The album seamlessly blends samples from various genres, creating a sound that's both unique and timeless. The production quality ensures that each element, from the beats to the verses, is crisp and clear, enhancing the overall listening experience.

In conclusion, "Midnight Marauders" is a classic album that showcases A Tribe Called Quest's unique place in hip-hop history. The album combines intelligent lyricism, innovative production, and a smooth, jazzy aesthetic to create a sound that's as fresh today as it was in 1993. It's not just an important record in the context of hip-hop but a pivotal work in the broader landscape of music. "Midnight Marauders" captures a moment in time while also transcending it, cementing A Tribe Called Quest's legacy as pioneers and visionaries in the genre.

"Midnight Marauders is the third studio album by American hip hop group A Tribe Called Quest, released on November 9, 1993, by Jive Records. Recording sessions for the album occurred at Battery Studios, Platinum Island Studios and Scorcerer Sound in New York City. Its production was mainly handled by Q-Tip, with contributions from Skeff Anselm, Large Professor and the group's DJ, Ali Shaheed Muhammad. A culmination of the group's two previous albums, it features an eclectic, gritty sound based on jazz, funk, soul and R&B samples, in addition to socially conscious, positively-minded, and humorous lyrics.Midnight Marauders debuted at number eight on the Billboard 200 and number one on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart. The first two singles, "Electric Relaxation" and "Award Tour", charted on the Billboard Hot 100, before the release of the final single, "Oh My God". On January 14, 1994, the album was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), with shipments of 500,000 copies in the United States. It was certified platinum by the RIAA nearly a full year later, on January 11, 1995, with shipments of one million copies.The album received mostly positive reviews from critics. In the following years, Midnight Marauders has acquired further acclamation from within the hip hop community for its production, chemistry and influence, with some regarding it as the group's best work, and one of the greatest hip hop albums of all time. Several writers have credited it as a contributor to a "second golden age" of hip hop in the mid-1990s, as well as the pinnacle of the Native Tongues movement." - Wikipedia