EPMD, DJ Scratch, DJ Timbuck2 Critic's Choice Early Warnings (Music) Recommended Soundboard

When: Tue., May 11, 9 p.m. 2010

The string of albums Eric Sermon and Parrish Smith released in the late 80s and early 90s were a pivot point for rap's transition from cold-blooded east-coast electro minimalism of the form's breakthrough artists to the warmer, more organic G-funk from which its first megastars would spring. The collage-like assemblages of samples in their beats and their way of pairing soul songs and ominous synthesized boom would influence everyone from Dr. Dre to Kanye, and the way they could keep up an uninterrupted flow of shit talk for the length of an entire album helped inspire an entire subgenre of übersalty New York rap groups, from Mobb Deep to M.O.P. to the Lox. If at the time Sermon and Smith were aware of their place in rap history, they certainly didn't seem too excited about it—though many have tried, no other rappers have ever been able to kill a rhyme with such absolute-zero deadpan nonchalance. —Miles Raymer

Price: $14, $7 in advance

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