December 01, 2021

The A-Team - Who Framed The A-Team? (1999)

Country: U.S.A.
Genre: Hip-Hop
Label Number: AKLK003-2

© 1999-2000 A-Team Kult L.A. Klassics
Patterning themselves after the '80s TV show The A-Team, underground hip-hop titans Aceyalone and Abstract Rude teamed up to record Who Framed the A-Team? as a swipe at mainstream hip-hop. The concept of the album is that real, hardcore underground hip-hop was such a novelty in the year 2000 that its creators were forced to go underground. Set amidst spare, jazzy beats, the pair attacks hip-hop materialism in "Doin' the Most for the Coast" and dismisses major-label deals in "Acey the Face Man." The mixture of the two MCs, the smooth polished Aceyalone and the rougher, harder-voiced Abstract Rude, works beautifully, especially since both are skilled rappers and lyricists. The production is, as with all other Aceyalone albums, minimal, emphasizing the lyrics while providing only the barest accompaniment with an occasional sample to provide a hint of melody. The A-Team concept sometimes wears thin as the album goes along, but there is enough engaging material to make it an overall success. If the album has a flaw, it is that the lack of lyrical depth and sometimes workmanlike beats will limit the album's appeal to already converted underground hip-hop fans, and it's definitely true that, while the album is entertaining, it's hardly the place to begin with to discover Aceyalone or Abstract Rude's talents. Though the concept and spare beats will probably alienate some mainstream hip-hop fans, Who Framed the A-Team? will please fans of underground hip-hop.

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tags: the a-team, a team, who framed the a team, 1999, flac,