Kurupt – Kuruption – 1998 Antra Records
After the rise and fall of Death Row Records, Dogg Pound and platinum selling artist Kurupt split from the label and dropped his first solo album after working with the likes of Daz, Tupac, Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, and being a part of one of the greatest dynasties in rap history. How his solo album would fare was up in the air.
West Coast Disc
1. This One’s For U – Production: Studio Tone
A laid back track with a good bounce to it, the production is dope for what it tries to achieve. Kurupt lays back with some pimp shit, dropping some tight lyrical flow with good word play. Good start to the West coast disc.
2. Make Some Noize – Production: Soopafly
Teaming up with Dogg Pound affiliate producer Soopafly, they work together to drop a sick collab. Beats that bang in your speakers and Kurupt comes hard over the beat, with a good chorus by Daz to yell to while having this bang in your car speakers. Good background adlibs by Daz. A slight remake of Public Enemy’s “Bring the Noise” for the new era. Dope track
3. Put That On Something – Production: Devante
Another track that bangs in the speakers, takes a while to get going. Sounds more like a studio freestyle than a track itself, the vocals have the sound of a freestyle and the mixing isn’t that great. The track is allright to start but its easy to skip past and not miss it. Especially with the chorus which is kind of embarrassing
4. Play My Cards – Production: Battlecat
This track sounds more west coast G Funk than the earlier “west coast album” tracks. With the trumpets and bounce to the background, Kurupt lays down some dope Dogg Food style verses. Tight track, very reminiscent of his Death Row days.
5. We Can Freak It – Production: Battlecat
Instant classic and one of Kurupt’s best tracks he ever dropped. West coast hit inside out, Kurupt drops one of his best storytelling tracks ever, over the production that just bangs. Any fan of the west could love this track for all its worth. It speaks for itself better than I can say.
6. Fresh – Production: Daz
The first Daz and Kurupt collabo on this album, and instantly takes you back to the Dogg Pound era. No verses dropped by Daz, but the production he lays out for Kurupt are nothing less than the hits they dropped a few years earlier. Tight track.
7. C Walk ft. Trey Deee – Production: Daz
Another instant Kurupt classic, and one of his highlights of his career. Daz gives a perfect beat for the verbal assault Kurupt is about to spit on the track. Laid back track but its just fire beginning to end, was later remixed with Tupac (never released) but the original with Trey is much better.
8. Ho’s A Housewife – Production: Kurupt
The original version of the Kurupt hit that would later appear on his “Streetz” album and Dr. Dre’s 5 mic album “2001”. Its hard to say which version is the best, lyrics are all the same, so it’s a matter of production which are all good in their own right. Another Kurupt highlight of his career.
9. Cant Let That Slide – Production: Twin
A tight beat, west coast feel to it all the way. Unfortunetely the squirrel voice for a chorus might ruin the track. Kurupt’s storytelling abilities hit a high point this far into the album. Minus the chorus, tight track all the way.
10. That’s Gangsta – Production: Warren G
Teaming up with legendary producer Warren G who helped innovate the west coast sound, it’s a perfect end to the west coast disc. Not so much of a club banger like you’d expect from them, but its an eerie feel to it, and Kurupt lays it down for the strange beat from Warren.
11. Survive Another Day
A slower and deep, dark beat, that Kurupt flows over perfectly. He hits another storytelling high of his career, one of the tracks you just kick back and listen to him tell the story. The chorus fits the track perfectly, dope track.
12. Ask Yourself A Question- Production: Dr. Dre
Not your typical Dre beat, so don’t get the hopes up for a instant banger. The production might even be the fall off of this track. Kurupt lays down an average set of verses. Not the greatest track on the album.
East Coast Disc
1. It’s a Set Up – Production: D Moet
First listen to the album way back, this was my favorite track on the album. The record static fits the track perfectly, the beat is just bass through the speakers and Kurupt tears the mutha*****a up. It’s a give or take song to most people, but I love this song.
2. Light Shit Up ft. Buckshot – Production: Easy Mo Bee
Kurupt teams up with legendary East coast producer, the way he teamed up with the likes of Daz or Warren G on the west coast disc. Buckshot kicks it off with a dope ass verse, and proves a good duo with Kurupt. Another ill track to start off the East Coast album.
3. Game – Production: D Moet
D Moet returns with another banging beat for Kurupt to tear up. Track is off the hook, the two of them were a good pair for each other because this far into the album, they’ve dropped two of the dopest tracks on the entire album. Great track.
4. Gimmewhatchagot – Production: MED
Repetitive and jumpy beat, and Kurupt doesn’t do much to flow over it. The lyrics he drop would be better suited over another type of beat. Bad choice to combine them together, Kurupt does some tight verses, but the song as a whole doesn’t work very well.
5. If You See Me ft. Trigga – Production: Storm
Very Wutang feel to the track, given, since Storm is famous for doing production for the Clan. First definite East coast track and its odd at first to hear Kurupt on a style of track like this but he doesn’t disappoint. West coast heads will probably be annoyed with it, but it’s a dope track. Loving it.
6. The Life ft. El Drex – Production: D Moet
A third banging laid back, make you think style track by D Moet. Kurupt and El Drex trade lines back and forth very well with each other. Dope laid back shit, you can picture this track in a movie where someone is in the low point of their life. Tight shit.
7. No Feelings ft. Slop, Patacico – Production: D Moet
This track is a straight up hit. Kurupt tears up the beat, again D Moet and Kurupt hook up on this east coast disc and again, hit it on the head again. This shit is just fire, Kurupt teaming up with two unknown rappers but you’d never think about it twice, its just a straight hit. One of the best tracks on both discs.
8. Its Time ft. Deadly Venom
Kurupt hooks up with Deadly Venom, a female rapper who did work with Cappadonna and Wutang. She comes hard over the beat, which is really basic, but the track is just grimey. Gets a little tired before Kurupt finally steps in, if you don’t skip the track before he does. Probably the lowlight of the entire album.
9. I Wanna ft. Ralik Royale, Snake, Floyd, Drea – Production: Devante
Again, another track to slow down the album. Stupid, unoriginal start to the track mixed with a wack mix of rappers who you hope you never hear from again. Bad song.
10. Who Do U Be – Production: RJ Rice
A more uptempo track that really does nothing to save the album by this point. Kurupt will start to rip but out of nowhere the chorus will kick in, gets annoying when you think hes about to keep tearing the track up. Kurupt does well but as a song together, its wack.
11. Freak It ft. Noreaga
Noreaga’s style of just being repetitive on choruses comes in, if you’re a fan of that, you’ll like it. Noreaga kicks off some dope rhymes over a deep beat. The track is actually pretty good, back in Noreaga’s prime teaming up with a kingpin from the west. Kurupt tears it up. Makes you forget about the last few horrible tracks, if you waited the album out this far.
At the time the album dropped, the rap game was just winding up years of nothing but classic albums on the east and west coast. Kurupt tried to capitalize with both coasts fans, and at the time, let down his fan base in the west while not impressing the people in the east. The album was criticized early, and people quickly put the album away. Looking back at the album today, its hard to believe this could ever be considered a failure. The album has a few weak points on each disc but are very overshadowed by the true hits of the album that people slept on.
Kurupt laid down some highlights of his career with “C Walk”, “We Can Freak It”, “Hos A Housewife”, and that’s just on one disc. On the other, hooking up with D Moet, they worked to drop some straight grimey bangers that should still be in peoples speakers 6 years later. In hindsight this album lyrically is Kurupt’s best output. He kills every track, regardless of the production, which at times is lacking but for the most part is killer. Give the album another listen because its nothing but heat that got lost in an era of classic albums.
Rating – 4/5