Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Juice Soundtrack (The Source, 1992)


As hip-hop continues to bumrush the silver screen, the soundtrack is almost as important as the plot. Juice, a new film that stars Digital Underground crew member 2Pac and features DJ's Richie Rich and Plasticman is no exception to the rule. Hank Shocklee has assembled an all-star roster of hip-hop and R&B artists to contribute previously unreleased songs with positive results. Established stars like Naughty By Nature, Eric B & Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Too Short, EPMD, Salt 'N Pepa, Cypress Hill and Son of Bazerk comprise the already-known hip-hop squad, and new comers MC Pooh and the Juvenille Committee round it out. While everything does not slam, there are some standout cuts. Naughty By Nature goes to work on "Uptown Anthem," a hard yet catchy groove where Treach rips the mic to shreds. For the title track "Juice (Know The Ledge)," Eric B & Rakim follow-up the R&B flavored "I Want To Know What's On Your Mind" (from the Houseparty II soundtrack) with the hardcore jolt to the head fans have been waiting for. The jam beings with a fast-paced, upright jazz bassline which is followed by a crackling kick/snare combo accented by a funky flute sample. Rakim goes for broke and delivers metaphors with a gangsta edge: "Shells lay around on the battleground / Dead bodies are found throughout the town / Try to put shame in my game to make a name / I'ma put it on a bullet and put it in your brain." - The Source, 1992. "Juice (Know The Ledge)" is my single favorite Hip-Hop record of ALL-TIME! I'm on the record with that.