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PETE ROCK & CL SMOOTH

Pete Rock & CL Smooth

The Main Ingredient - Reissue

    “We are the planters of the weeds or roses in our garden. Take the plunge within yourself to find The Main Ingredient.” So reads CL Smooth’s album dedication in the liners to Pete Rock & CL’s underrated, soulful and deeply grooving sophomore album. For fans, it was bittersweet, as it would be their last as a duo. By 1994, Pete and CL were darlings of both fans and critics, still on a high after 1992’s Mecca & The Soul Brother and the album’s emotional smash single “They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.).” Two years later, they had grown even more as men and artists. Gone was some of the righteous striving of their earlier work, replaced by mature – yet still righteous – wisdom. And a lot more love as well, bringing a larger female constituency into their fanbase. They were adults now, reveling in the plateau they had reached. The duo’s ‘90s swan song is a powerful double album that still resonates with Golden Era hip-hop fans: 16 cuts deep and full of intelligence, fire and warmth.

    Beats-per-minute-wise, the album mostly clocks at a comfortable strutting pace, bolstered by Pete Rock’s pioneering use of filtered basslines and a recently-hatched obsession with Rhodes piano. The new tracks filled speakers and headphones with soul, as CL continued to assert his lyrical prowess all throughout. The lead single, “I Got A Love,” is a perfect example of the group’s ‘94 steez: a super-catchy and respectful, but far-from-soft love track, suitable for any rap fan’s romantic needs. “Take You There” and “Carmel City” cover similar ground. Considering CL Smooth’s top-level brag rapper status, cuts like “I Get Physical,” “Get On The Mic” and “Check It Out” effectively reminded competitors not to test him. Pete also gets in the game on the mic several times on the album, acquitting himself nicely (and solo) on the cloudy day soul of “Escape,” alongside other cuts. Add more pensive lyrical forays like “All The Places,” “Searching,” and – perhaps the album’s sleeper cut – “It’s On You” and you have one of the more complete rap full-lengths of the mid-1990s. This isn’t surprising, considering the wonder twins-esque skills of Pete and CL. But it does make fans wonder what would have happened if they had stayed together longer

    TRACK LISTING

    A1. In The House
    A2. Carmel City
    A3. I Get Physical
    A4. Sun Won’t Come Out

    B1. I Got Love
    B2. Escape
    B3. The Main Ingredient
    B4. Worldwide

    C1. All The Places
    C2. Tell Me
    C3. Take You There
    C4. Searching

    D1. Check It Out
    D2. In The Flesh
    D3. It’s On You
    D4. Get On The Mic

    Pete Rock & CL Smooth

    Mecca And The Soul Brother - Reissue

      Pete Rock And CL Smooth’s Full-Length Debut Is Presented Here As A Double LP Pressed On Clear Vinyl! Get On Down proudly present Mecca And The Soul Brother, the critically acclaimed 1992 full-length debut from Pete Rock & CL Smooth. The album is considered as one of the greatest Hip Hop albums of all time. Boasting tracks such as the first single, “They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)”, a dedication to their deceased friend; “Trouble T-Roy”, which went on to become not only their signature hit, but also one of Hip Hop’s all-time great songs. The album is propelled forward by Rock’s quick, soulful interludes; usually bits of old R&B tunes layered with his signature trumpet and sax loops. Smooth’s liquid freestyle delivery pieces together the perfect vocal match that, together, creates a sprawling, nearly 80-minute-long album on which not a single song or interlude is a throwaway or a superfluous piece. Mecca And The Soul Brother has stood the test of time. The release has been named one of the essential recordings of the 90s by Rolling Stone, appears on Ego Trips listing of the Top 25 Hip Hop albums released from 1980-1998, and appeared on The Source’s 100 Greatest Rap Albums of all time.

      TRACK LISTING

      A1. Return Of The Mecca
      A2. For Pete’s Sake
      A3. Ghettos Of The Mind
      A4. Lots Of Lovin
      A5. Act Like You Know

      B1. Straighten It Out
      B2. Soul Brother #1
      B3. Wig Out
      B4. Anger In The Nation
      B5. They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)

      C1. On And On
      C2. It’s Like That
      C3. Can’t Front On Me
      C4. The Creator (Remix)

      D1. Mecca And The Soul Brother (Remix)
      D2. The Basement
      D3. If It Ain’t Rough, It Ain’t Right
      D4. Skinz


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