Souls Of Mischief: '93 Til Infinity (1993). "This is how we chill..."
B. Cox and J.Owe look back at Oakland rap group Souls of Mischief debut album 93 Til Infinity as it turns 30. In the midst of a coastal emergence and commercial recognition in both southern California and the Bay-Area, the teenage group became major players in the Oakland underground scene. After their demos became the talk of certain rap circles and their music was circulated on the legendary "Wake Up Show" with Sway and Tech, the group secured a record deal and started working on their debut album.
As a part of the alternative hip-hop collective Heiroglyphics, the album wa entirely produced by group member A-Plus and collective members, Domino, Jay Biz, Casual and group founder Del the Funky Homosapien. Utilizing mainly jazz records from record label CTI Records, the album featured looped jazzy melodies with menacing, but smooth bass tones and snapping drums to give the album its underground feel. The four emcees (Phesto, Opio, Tajai along with A-Plus) impressed with their versatile flows, timely punchlines and skilled wordplay. In a step away from their mainstream contemporaries, the album featured every many topics such as neighborhood violence, the importance of safe sex, exploitation and hanging out.
The album featured three singles, the most popular being the classic title track that reached the Top 20 of the Hot Rap Singles and the Top 100 of the Billboard charts. While the album did not have great mainstream success, the album and the ever popular title track have risen in recognition and popularity in the three decades since its release, with many marking it as a landmark underground release and underground West Coast hip-hop classic.
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