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"Project: Funk Da World" was dropped in 1994 and came as the debut album from the Bad Boy Records artist, Craig Mack. Seeing nothing more than short-term success, this was only one of two albums he would record and it sees the Trenton, New Jersey native coming with some of the underground East Coast stuff that would build up Puffy's label. It came just a week after The Notorious B.I.G's debut, "Ready To Die", and has him attempting to complete the mission set out in his title with production from Puff Daddy, Easy Mo Bee and Mack himself.
1. "Project: Funk Da World" (Intro)
2. "Get Down"
After a nice little introductory piece we find that things move on as he wishes to get his mission underway and set out with exactly what he wants to do with his drawn-out style to make him stand out in a time when underground East Coast Hip Hop was thriving. On this one the beats slap away and hype you up nicely as he gets into the swing of things and finds exactly what he wants to do here.
3. "Making Moves With Puff"
For this one we see that Puffy comes up to act as an addition drive to things as he acts as the hypeman (just as he did for Biggie) and it's a nice addition to things as Mack goes off and shows that he has taken influence from people such as Biz Markie and Redman in order to come out with such funky stuff, but done in a laid-back manner that doesn't seem too intimidating to those who weren't down with that sort of Rap.
4. "That Y'All"
On this one we get production out of Craig Mack himself (with a little help from Lenny Marrow) and together they come out with some of the kind of thing that was bang on-trend for the time, but sounds like it's done in complete opposition to The Notorious B.I.G.'s serious record. It's a great one, and the dense percussion and bass seems to push forward this raw feel of the thing and all it does here.
5. "Flava In Ya Ear"
His most well-known track, this is a straight killer of a tune. The remix was a killer posse cut and known as a platform for setting up both Busta Rhymes' solo career and The Notorious B.I.G's career as someone not to mess with. It's a killer tune and it sticks out massively as one that you really need to pay attention to. The lyrics aren't particularly special here, but the way he rides the beats makes it what it is.
6. "Funk Wit Da Style"
Taking on a sample that had been heard quite a bit around this time, here we get a pretty cold tune (considering where I thought it would be taken), and we see that on it he makes for some pretty fresh stuff to show that there's a bit more to what he does and that each track shows just a bit more of what he's capable of. The hypnotic flow takes you over and forces you into his groggy state, and once you're there that's it - you're force to feel what he does.
7. "Judgement Day"
For this one we get more of the slapping beats from Easy Mo Bee, it seems to have lots of the feel that "Flava In Ya Ear" did and as a result on some parts of the album we have the MC coming with flows which take on the sorts of things that were heard on it. I can't say that it really mattered too much as he still does a good job at coming with some original flows (but just with some recycled elements thrown in.
8. "Real Raw"
On this one we get some dark material. It sounds as if this stuff was recorded a little before the rest of the album as we see that on it we get him producing the thing himself, and when you consider that he's been releasing professionally since 1988, it seems to take on a bit more of the throwback feel to it with the DJ scratches thrown in there too. It's a pretty dark one and not one of the best, but is still one to look out for.
Easy Mo Bee gets back on the beats and we see that we're able to get more of that Funk back on the joint to liven things up and get listeners hyped up after having a track that I thought wasn't really saying much when you compare it to the rest of it. The tune flows nicely for him and although it's hard to stay on track with his flows, he seems to manage them well to bring a powerful in-your-face track.
10. "When God Comes"
Another of the singles from the album, this was received quite as well as others, however it does sound as if it deserved quite a bit of attention as here we receive a fly cut that really gets you moving and as though you are being welcomed into his world again. It has a strong swing to it and so has mild club appeal in spite of the fact that it's another one designed for the streets (and his fans to just bob their head to).
11. "Welcome To 1994"
He ends the album off with this one as he comes with a self-produced one. Here the rhymes seem to be right in with the way things have gone on the rest of the thing and it makes for more exciting and interesting stuff that you don't tend to get anywhere else. There's lots to like about it and it sounds like a relevant way to end the album off and one that seems to pull everything together nicely for him.
Although clearly nothing able to compete with the classic Nas, Biggie and Common Sense albums from 1994, this was a nice alternative pick and one that takes a nice and feel-good approach with his original way on how to rhyme and how to put things across to his audience without trying to scare anyone off.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Project/Funk Da World
2 Get Down
3 Making Moves With Puff
4 That Y'all
5 Flava In Ya Ear
6 Funk Wit Da Style
7 Judgement Day
8 Real Raw
10 When God Comes
11 Welcome To 1994