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"Chopper City" was released in 1995 as the debut full-length from the New Orleans, Louisiana rapper B.G.. Released amongst some of the labels first it has the Cash Money artist getting his first break with an album featuring guest stops from Bun B, Juvenile and the Big Tymers. Although it doesn't have the same Lil Wayne features as his first (when Weezy was known as Baby D), this one has the 15-year-old offering what's considered a Southern Rap classic.
1. "187.9 FM" (Intro)
2. "All On U"
Moving off from the introduction where Mannie Fresh and Birdman say a little something to set things up, we see that this track has the 'Baby Gangsta' coming to hit us with the sort of things which we'd get through the rest of the album. It's straight-up Southern Gangsta Rap and I felt that B.G. did it well as he jumps up over the fly beats which Mannie Fresh lays down and gets people hyped-up on.
3. "Uptown Thang"
The production on this one has a real funkiness about it to ensure that you'll have a good time when you hear come in. I felt that what you get in the rhymes isn't particularly special, however he's clearly ahead of his years with his endless flows which simply don't stop rolling out of his mouth as he sticks to what Mannie offers on the beats and he rhymes about whatever seems right - usually rather dark things.
4. "N***as Don't Understand"
This tune has him linking up with the Big Tymers (Birdman and Mannie Fresh) once again where the vocals are concerned. I felt that this time around it wasn't making for as good results though and much of this was down to the fact that it's set off by rather lame and unless beats and from that point B.G. goes off with flows which I can't say I felt had any real substance to it at all and so it pulls things down.
5. "Ziggly Wiggly - Toilet Paper" (Lude)
As we're taken off an interlude, this one has us taking things in a bit of a different direction as the names on the feature are much bigger this time around. For this one he gets fellow Cash Money artist Juvenile rhyming alongside him over the laid-back beats and to add to this we see that none other than UGK's Bun B is seen to jump over the beats to assist. It's another deep and dark one, but the change in rappers certainly gives more of a reason to get interested in the material.
7. "N***as 'N' Trouble"
The way that Mannie Fresh does the beats on this one makes them a little more open than most that we get here, however it still retains the dark and dingy feel that all Rap from these ends of the US brought with them with the relatively cheap and poor recording equipment as compared to what was being heard at this point by the main players in the Hip Hop world. Although this may be the case, the results are pleasant once more.
8. "Bat A B***h"
Although the majority of works coming out of these ends was known for its pure originality and lack of samples, Mannie Fresh breaks this by including a little snippet of Whodini's "Friends" (also heard in Nas' "If I Ruled The World" and 2Pac's "Troublesome '96"). I thought that this helped things significantly and meant that it was able to really draw me in from the offset to make B.G.'s rhymes sound even harder.
9. "Wheel Chairs"
On this tune we have a tune with beats which have a light Bounce feel to them with some experimentation from Mannie Fresh as he moves towards the sort of thing which he would increasingly improve at making before 'Bounce Music' was developed fully towards the late nineties. It's a pretty fresh and fun tune here and so something which you can't really have many issues with.
10. "Order 20 Keys"
This is another track on the album with strong beats and so it's able to counteract the rather plain and unengaging in which B.G. gets to the rhyming. I felt that as it went along it was made to sound more and more like G-Funk in how its done and I thought that what's done here is a good southern representation of how exactly they get down with that sort of sound and direction in the music.
11. "Play'n & Laugh'n"
With this track it becomes even more apparent that B.G.'s style of rapping is quite dense and means that the way he contrasts his flows makes it hard to make something that you're likely to remember many of the lyrics to. Somehow this release managed to gather a massive hype over the years to where to would be consider somewhat of a classic, but tunes such as this show that it's not anything special, but does have strong beats almost all the way through.
12. "Doing Bad"
This is another example of the southern bassy sounds being combined together with what was heard out in the West Coast when it came to Hip Hop around this time. I thought that there was a lot to like when it came down to the beats, but once again there was little to enjoy about the rapper's rhyming and how exactly he's able to direct it in order to show that he stands out amongst the others of this time.
13. "So Much Death"
On this one we find that things are taken in a bit of a different direction as it's a much darker tune and one which the rapper exploring his personal life and what his parents did for him. I felt that it was done pretty well as he rhymes about his late father over beats which jack direction from 2Pac's "Keep Your Head Up" and do a great job at ensuring that it draws listeners in through its familiarity.
The album comes to a close with a raw, slapping tune which gets B.G. just letting all the excess energy out. I felt that this sounded like a rather messy tune, but as most tunes coming out of New Orleans and Tha 'Nolia in particular was of this sort and so its likely that locals will have put up with it. I felt that it was a decent way to close things off, but is another example of how this record is lacking massively.
If this album is considered to be a 'classic' in the Dirty South then it doesn't say much for what those ends of the US have contributed to the Hip Hop world. I saw this to be a rather generic Cash Money release of the nineties where everything is straight-forward with endless streams of rather poor lyrics flowed out. However, the top-class beatmaker ensures that you have a good time and you want to stay a part of the material.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 187.9 "FM"
2 All On U
3 Uptown Thang
4 Niggas Don't Understand
5 Ziggly Wiggly-Toilet Paper
7 Niggas N Trouble
8 Bat A Bitch
9 Wheel Chair
10 Order 20 Keys
11 Play'n & Laugh'n
12 Doing Bad
13 So Much Death