Wednesday, November 25, 2009

No offense to a player but yo I don't play

82. De La Soul - "Stakes Is High" (Tommy Boy Music, 1996)

The erstwhile Jay Dee's beat on this is fire (ooh lawd when it comes back in at 3:56 as Pos says "from dark to light sky") and Dove is great too, but Posdnous is in a whole other universe here so let's talk about him. The first couplet is one of the great shit-talking, "super lyrical" introductions ever: "the instamatic focal point, bringing damage to your borough/be some brothers from the east with them beats that be thorough". RAH! He was only 26 at the time, but on "Stakes is High" Pos raps about street life with the authority of a vet without falling into the self-righteousness and over-piety that many a conscious rapper would. He's super clever and passionate at the same time (" wonder where we live is called the projects") and delivers one of my favorite rap performances ever. This is probably my favorite De La Soul song and that's saying a whole lot.

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