Throwback album: Gang Starr - Moment of Truth


I remember being first introduced to Gang Starr by a classmate of mine back in my early high school days. At that point Gang Starr wasn't really officially releasing new material anymore, but their stuff was new to me. I was always a fan of most 90's hip hop, and how I missed the duo of Guru (rapper) and DJ Premier (producer) was beyond me. Technically, I had heard some of their tracks, but never knew who the artist was.

While Gang Starr was around since the late 80's, they really gained more notice with the song "Mass Appeal," which came out in 1994 on the album Hard to Earn. Even though I really enjoyed that album, I chose their follow up, Moment of Truth, because this is truly the point where they crossed over and saw some mainstream success. More people were exposed to Guru's lyricism and Premier's tight produced tracks, and with this album, they really showed how well hip hop can be done.

The beats had a newer flavor with more orchestral instruments and having a little less of the funk/soul elements that Premier usually incorporated before. It was a revitalizing tweak to the already fresh style they had. Guru reached out further with his wordplay and focused on other issues to rap about. The album also had some great guests including: Inspectah Deck (Wu-Tang), Scarface, G-Dep, and Kci & JoJo to name a few. It is unfortunate that the pair would only released one more album, 2003's The Ownerz, before ultimately parting ways. Also approaching, is the one year anniversary this April of the passing of Keith "Guru" Elam.

Notable tracks from the Moment of Truth: "You Know My Steez," "Work," "Royalty," "The Militia," "Above the Clouds," & "Moment of Truth." Get the album here.

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