Lords of the Underground are one of the illest rap groups of all time. They had MCs Do It All & Mr. Funkee, and DJ Lord Jazz on the 1s & 2s. They had production from the legendary Marley Marl, as well as K-Def. The MCs are from Newark, NJ, & Lord Jazz is from Cleveland.
They had the classic album in 1993 "Here Come The Lords". I played the crap out of that album, such that even today I could probably recite you half the verses. Every track is good. This album is slept on and should be included in the historical top album lists.
Chief Rocka. Check fellow Newark representative Redman in the video, as well as Marley Marl.
Here Come The Lords
The next year they followed up with another excellent album "Keepers of the Funk".
What I'm After
In 1999 they had a disappointing album "Resurrection" with different types of beats and rhyme style from Mr.Funkee.
According to their myspace & this site they've been touring in Europe and are working on a 4th album. I hope it will be great & they garner some new fans that subsequently check for their great first 2 albums. I doubt they will get any mainstream radio play, but nowadays indie artist can get heard by real rap fans if they make a quality album, thanks to sites like HHB.
Here's some reasons why LOTUG was so unique & great:
1 Heavy use of horns - saxophone, trumpet, etc. I can't recall any other rap artist using so many horns in their beats, this made their beats very unique and great.
2 Spastic rhyme steelo. Do It All & Mr. Funkee made their energetic beats even more hyper with their fast-raping passionate hyper steez. Check all the crazy hand gestures in the videos. LOTUG music is like audio caffeine, you get amped listening to it. "Funky Child" (unfortunately video not avail on youtube) has to be one of the most hyper songs of all time, perhaps tied with Busta Rhymes' "Woo Hah". In fact, I am selecting Do It All & Mr. Funkee here as the inaugural inductees in my hyper HOF (hall of fame).
3 Unique voice. Mr. Funkee has a unique high-pitch voice. Unlike many lame annoying high-pitched voice MCs like Little Wayne, Funkee's voice was ill. Do It All also had a unique voice.
4 DJ scratching. Currently only a few artists such as Dilated Peoples use
extensive DJ scratching. DJ Lord Jazz was nice with the turntables.
5 Comedy in lyrics. Like DJ scratching, this is kind of an endangered attribute in current rap. Funkee said
"once I get up on the mic
make you want to scream 'hee hee'
like Michael Jackson"
6. passion for rap. These dudes are hip-hop incarnate, no KRS-1 fake religion. Check Funkee's verse on "Chief Rocka"
"I hear a beat I grab the mic, and then I start this workin
The kids around the way used to think that I was buggin
But they don't understand how I feel about the funk
I walk with the funk, I talk with the funk
I eat with the funk, I sleep with the funk
I live for the funk, I'll die for the funk
So now what do they say, when I'm walkin up the block?
Boom shaka laka there goes the Chief Rocka"
LOTUG is ill - go listen to their first 2 albums