M.O.P. & Snowgoons – Sparta

M.O.P. & Snowgoons – Sparta
Babygrande Records: 2011

 I don’t know what I like most about the fall, but campaign season deserves heavy consideration behind 49ers football and “it’s cold I need a snuggle buddy. u can be little spoon ;)” texts.  Every night, I’m treated to the most entertaining reality show on TV: politics. Backstabbing!  Sexual harassment allegations!  Petty sniping!  Cast Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann as the hot girls who happen to be lunatics, and it’s must-see TV.

The issue that all the candidates have been ignoring is the outsourcing of classic boom-bap production jobs to Europe.  It’s like European producers congregate in front of record stores and wait for 1990s East Coast rappers to drive up looking for the sound (see 2010’s El Da Sensei’s GT 2: Nu World 2 with Poland’s The Returners).  This time, it’s M.O.P. picking up Germany’s Snowgoons for Sparta.

Danze and Fame impressively don’t sound their age, an accomplishment considering how many early  1990s rappers had to slow their flow down once their career hit the 12-15 year range.  Also considering that they don’t stray far from their hardcore subject matter, M.O.P. manage to keep it mostly fresh.

The bullying “Get Yours” is best described by Lil’ Fame: “that old gorilla in the trunk shit” that you’d expect to hear on Warriorz.  Billy Danze still represents the vest-mandatory mindset of their beloved Brownsville on “Blasphemy”:

I take care of matters, I undo status
Whoever’s the baddest, tell them n***** to get to packin’
It’s a ritual to spit a few and leave them dudes splattered
I don’t got to go to the trunk, punk, I got it.

The Brownsvillains try their hand at G-funk on the mellow  “Rollin” and managed to impress this Californian.  M.O.P.’s sound and delivery have never lent themselves to the laid-back sounds of the West Coast, but it should shut up anyone who says all M.O.P. do is yell.

Sparta is a barrange of bravado and they M.O.P. sound more matured and even a little more polished and generally avoid filling repetition aside from “Hard Niggaz.”  Coupled with the Snowgoons’ ability to keep the album crisp, tight, and moving, it’s apparent that the years have been kind to M.O.P.

 3.5 out of 5

Stream “Get Yours” below.

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