Musical Rantings and Ravings

Audio, Reviews

Raising Hell by Run-DMC

album cover

Album Cover

Raising Hell by Run-DMC is a groundbreaking album that went triple platinum after its release in the 80’s and which rolling stone recently named as one of the top 500 albums of all time. It was a fresh album back then and it is surprisingly fresh (and refreshing) today! These guys were pioneers in rap and this album features all the things that still make rap good… beatboxing, good rhymes, and scratching. The lyrics are clever and fun (and mostly clean!). Here are some that got my attention:

“Lord of lyrics, duke of discussion
Ruler of rock, your king at cold-crushin” [Raising Hell]

“The unbelieving receiving prophecy so true
I cut the head off the Devil and I throw it at you” [Raising Hell]

“You proceeded to eat it cos you was in the mood
But holmes you did not read it was a can of dog food!” [You be illin]

In Peter Piper they pay homage to fairy tale rhymes (but add that they (Run-DMC) are king):
“Now Dr. Seuss and Mother Goose both did their thing
But Jam Master’s gettin loose and D.M.C.’s the king”

And there are morals to their stories:
“Because you don’t go to class, you will not pass
You like to go but you should slow because you’re goin too fast” [Dumb Girl]

“We are not thugs (we don’t use drugs) but you assume (on your own)
They offer coke (and lots of dope) but we just leave it alone” [It’s tricky]

Son Of Byford is a short track featuring early beat-boxing. In Walk this Way they collaborated with Aerosmith and created rap/rock fusion, which also utilizes scratching. This single is impressively still a favorite amongst classics! Also, throughout the album, the beat is always good… it makes your body want to move! Lastly, for those of us who remember this album from when it debuted, it is a nostalgic walk down memory lane.

Whether listening to this for the first time or revisiting it, you will have fun (any maybe dance a bit). This album is available for check-out in the music library, CD-3698.

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