The Likwit Junkies The L.J.’s

[ABB; 2005]

Styles: underground hip-hop
Others: Dilated Peoples, Planet Asia, Alkaholiks

Not all West Coast underground rappers do deodorant commercials and host Pimp My Ride. Surprisingly, many of them still do what they were doing six years ago. This isn't a good thing.

Defari, one of the most commanding voices of the Likwit Crew, continues to press on, recording music and teaching high school students. (Does he still teach?) Dismally, pressing on doesn't equate with interesting product. Teamed up with DJ Babu to form the Likwit Junkies, Defari gives us much of what's been given to us a million times over.

Nothing has changed for these underground hip-hop veterans. They haven't progressed. They are stagnant. They're sticking to a formula that was at its peak almost a decade ago. This is something that plagues many of the current underground rappers. It's really quite a shame. They have plenty of talent, but complacency seems to leave them dry and withering. Song topics include the typical life struggles, pot, crew camaraderie, and the occasional female obsession. Guest appearances from friends and associates Phil Da Agony, Evidence, and Planet Asia (among others) do nothing to help the record.

"One Day Away" is Defari trying his hand at a double-time flow. "One Day Away" is also Defari failing at a double-time flow. Babu's beats are lacking. They don't come anywhere close to his work with Dilated Peoples or the Beat Junkies.

With all that said, the album does have one redeemable quality -- it's unintentionally nostalgic. The problem with that is that nostalgia doesn't last nearly as long as the length of this album.

1. Intro
2. L.J.'s Anthem
3. One Day Away
4. The Hop
5. Salute
6. Change
7. Strength In Numbers
8. The Good Green
9. Keep Doin' It
10. One Time
11. D.G. Skit
12. 6 In The Morning
13. Ghetto
14. S.C.A.N.S

15. Dark Ends
16. Dreamgirl
17. Brother
18. The Interview

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