In 1987 legendary rap pioneer Kool Moe Dee released this, his 2nd solo album, on Jive Records. Utilizing a variety of producers, including a young Teddy Riley, the music on this album showcases some of the earliest examples of what would become known as New Jack Swing. A running theme throughout this album is Kool Moe Dee’s attacks on younger rappers, in particular LL Cool J, who he claims stole his style (note the red Kangol hat under the tire of the jeep on the cover).
1/HOW YA LIKE ME NOW?
This title track has become an iconic phrase itself, the perfect answer to anyone who didn’t think you would succeed in something.
2/WILD WILD WEST
A great track about his neighborhood growing up.
3/WAY WAY BACK
In this song he purposely invokes the old party rhymes of the late-70’s/early 80’s, with drums, horns, and call-outs to the audience.
A clever sample of the old Paul Simon song, although the lyrics are rather simplistic.
The third and final single from this album, warning against the dangers of a life of crime.
Intense lyrical wordplay over a hard rock beat.
7/I’M A PLAYER
Typical braggadocio lyrics about his skill with ladies, rapped over a funky beat.
More braggadocio lyrics, with a hardcore beat.
A warning to young rap rookies about avoiding scandalous women and wasting their money.
A hardcore battle-rap over a thinly-veiled cover of Queen’s We Will Rock You beat.
A midtempo beat as Kool Moe Dee raps about loving the ladies and making money.
Even when some of subject matter gets repetitive, Kool Moe Dee’s masterful rhymes are worth listening to. He is clearly one of the greatest, yet sadly underrated, rappers of all time, and this is his best complete album. Chacebook rating: 4 STARS