Review Summary: An album that is essential to any hip-hop head.
At the time this album came out, G-Funk was the popular thing, so Biggies entrance into hip-hop took hip-hop by storm, with hardcore, ear-grabbing lyrics and wit instead of G-Funk. He truly showed that he was one of the best of all time with his both albums that were both classics. This album, while overrated, is one of the best of all time.
Now, for the comparison to other double disc hip hop records. What other double albums are there in hip hop? Well, one of the biggest ones is 2Pac's record, known as All Eyez On Me. Is Life After Death better than that album. The answer to that, is a simple no. That album has overall better songs. However, the 2 albums share many similarities. The first similarity that they share, is that they both have filler. Well, that's actually the only similarity that they share.
Another double disc album is Jay-Z-The Blueprint 2. I'll skip this one, since this one is NOT even close to any other double disc, and is merely average. That being said, there's another double disc album to talk about. That would be Outkast-Speakerboxxx/The Love Below. Life After Death is better than that album, but they don't share many similarities.
Another double disc album is Nas-Street's Disciple. While SD is a great album, it's nowhere near Life After Death. Then, there's Wu-Tang Forever. Again, nowhere near L.A.D.
Anyways, let's get started with the track by track review of Life After Death.
1. Life After Death (Intro): An interesting intro that picks up where Ready To Die left off. Can't really rate it since is's just an intro.
2. Somebody's Gotta Die: A great way to start an album. This song contains interesting murder rhymes. This song has been sampled in Three Bricks by Ghostface Killah, and other songs. 5/5
3. Hypnotize: One of the most popular songs on the album. This song is an interesting one, and shows that Notorious B.I.G can be commercial, while still being genius. This song is brilliant, and contains a noticeable sample of La Di Da Di by Slick Rick. 5/5
4. Kick In The Door: The best song on the album, you're probably wondering why I think that, it's because it has a great beat by DJ Premier, and there's brilliant wordplay, and it contains a sample of Unbelievable by Notorious B.I.G. This song has been sampled in The Rulers Back by Jay-Z, and other songs. This song features great samples of Unbelievable by Notorious B.I.G, Get Money by Junior M.A.F.I.A, and other songs. 5/5
5. F*** You Tonight: One of the weakest songs on the album, but still a good song. It's one of the love songs on the album, and contains a good chorus by R Kelly. 4/5
6. Last Day: A classic song with one of the best guest appearances on the album by The LOX, who have great lyrical performances. This song also has classic production by Havoc of Mobb Deep. 5/5
7. I Love The Dough: Don't be fooled by the title, this song is brilliant, and contains the best guest appearance on the album by Jay-Z. 5/5
8. What's Beef?: A song where Biggie talks about beef in a brilliant way. Notorious B.I.G rhymes about what beef really is. This song has been sampled in Beef by Royce Da 5'9, and other songs. 5/5
9. B.I.G. Interlude: Just an interlude, so I can't really rate it. There's a short verse however.
10. Mo Money Mo Problems: One of the most popular songs on the album. Again, don't be fooled by the title, this song is brilliant as well, and even Puff Daddy and Ma$e do a good job in this song. Also, this song has a great sample of I'm Coming Out by Diana Ross. 5/5
11. N***** Bleed: Another brilliant track, with great murder rhymes. This song has been sampled in Three Bricks by Ghostface Killah, and other songs. 5/5
12. I Got A Story To Tell: A track that shows that Biggie has storytelling ability as well. 5/5
Overall disc 1 rating is 5/5.
1. Notorious Thugs: A brilliant song that shows that Biggie can also rhyme with a fast flow as well. This song has one of the best guest appearances on the album by Bone Thugs N Harmony. 5/5
2. Miss U: A personal song dedicated to Biggies dead friend(s), with a great chorus by 112. 5/5
3. Another: One of the weakest tracks on the album, but still good. Another love song, this one has Lil Kim. 3/5
4. Going Back To Cali: Another one of the most popular songs on the album. A classic song. 5/5
5. Ten Crack Commandments: A great song, where Biggie talks about his rules of drug dealing, over a great beat by DJ Premier. This song features great samples of Shut Em Down by Public Enemy, and other songs. 5/5
6. Playa Hater: The weakest song on the album, but still a good song. A funny song where Biggie tries to sing. 3/5
7. Nasty Boy: One of the weakest songs on the album, but still a good track. Another love song. This one was later remixed to Nasty Girl, and was released on the Duets album. 3/5
8. Sky's The Limit: Another track with 112, and a great one too. 5/5
9. The World Is Filled...: One of the weaker songs on the album, but still a good one. This one has Too Short, Puff Daddy, and Carl Thomas, who does a great chorus. This is another love song. This song has a great sample of The What by the Notorious B.I.G. 4/5
10. My Downfall: A legendary track with DMC, but DMC could have done a better job as a guest. This is still a great song though. 5/5
11. Long Kiss Goodnight: Another great song, this one has great production by the RZA of the Wu-Tang Clan, and has brilliant lyrics by Biggie. 5/5
12. You're Nobody (Til Somebody Kills You): Another brilliant song, and a great way to end the album. 5/5
Overall disc 2 rating is 5/5.
Phenomenal Guest Appearances
Bottom line is, that this album is classic, and one of the best hip hop albums of all time.
3 best songs off of disc 1:
1. Kick In the Door
2. Somebody's Gotta Die
3. What's Beef?
3 Best songs off of disc 2:
1. Ten Crack Commandments
2. My Downfall
3. Notorious Thugs
3 weakest songs on disc 1:
1. F*** You Tonight
2. Mo Money Mo Problems
3. I Love the Dough
3 weakest songs on disc 2:
1. Playa Hater
3. Nasty Boy
3 best songs overall:
1. Kick In the Door
2. Ten Crack Commandments
3. My Downfall
3 weakest songs overall:
1. Playa Hater
2. F*** You Tonight