Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Yah Yah'll Stomp Out Ya Endocrine System

Sometimes some dope shit just falls through the cracks. Yah Yah, Young Zee's little brother, was probably the most under-appreciated MCs in the Outsidaz crew. Everyone knew Zee going in from his Perspective stuff, Pace Won was really given the chance to showcase himself, and of course Rah Digga and Eminem were blowing up on their own. Slang Ton was starting to get some shine, winning the Blaze battle, etc. and Yah was never really recognized as more than just another of the guys in the large crew. But go back even as far as "Rain Or Shine," and he's that MC who you didn't know that had us trippin' on the Outz MCs.

After the Outsidaz fumbled on their major label release, The Bricks and tragically split up, Yah Yah moved to Florida where he hooked up with a small production outfit called 5th Lmnt Productions. They don't seem to be around anymore; but their site used to tell the story, "Through a series of events, THE 5TH met up with Yahyah, formerly of the Outsidaz and recorded two albums... Sage [one of their in-house producers] and Yah got together on a collaboration effort and after crankin out some of the hottest tracks you'll ever hear, started bumping heads in the production process. This creative control issue is what eventually lead to Yah's departure."

Those two albums: Yah Yah's Lord of the Underground and Yah Yah and Sage Lee's The Collaboration, don't seem to have ever come out[found one? Let me know!]. But what did come out was this 2005 promo-only CD single from that Collaboration album: "All I Need Is Some Love" b/w "Time 2 Party." Now, I know what you're thinking. Years after The Outz split, a lesser known member solo with some unknown, indie producer... and look at those titles! That's gotta be pure garbage. But, no; don't let the evidence fool you.

First of all, "All I Need Is Some Love" is not the sappy, desperate attempt at radio-friendly love song crossover it looks like. Yeah, it's about relationships; but this is from the crew that once rhymed, "Ya bitch said aliens raped her and her four friends; but it was all the Outz... we dressed up as Martians" on a Redman album. Yah Yah doesn't go quite that far this time around, but he kills it on the mic, flipping one crazy multi-syllable rhyme after another. The production is quality, but would definitely be considered corny if any other MC was on it, without Yah's off-kilter, grimy flow. it's a weird marriage of underground spitting and mainstream beats that just really works.

And the exact same formula works a second time on "Time 2 Party:" poppy production, a classic Outsidaz flow and crazy lyrics:

"Who gets the party rockin'? Thugs with shotties droppin',
Ladies hoppin', body rockin', lollipop Baccardi shots and
You oughta know it's Lova; all the flows is gutta;
Word to mutha, all the brutha knows is butta;
And I'm gonna spread it for ya; that's why I'm hittin' chords,
Spittin' raw, rippin' tours and practicin' my magic like The Gryphondors
It's the lord - he done blessed the kid
To make heads spin around without the exorcist.
I don't need necklaces and sex with fifths;
I'm rich like the soil in Texas is.
The party ain't the place for all ya plans with handguns;
I buy out the bar and get everybody dancin'.
Cops come checkin' to arrest the camp,
But we're VIP sippin' on breast implants.
Test them plants, I roll up some weed and pull it;
Let you play Superman and stop a speedin' bullet."

He's even paired up with some Will Downing/ Alexander O'Neal/ whoever-style R&B singer doing back-ups and the chrous (on both songs). But I tell you it works. Hearing him echo phrases like "breast implants" is bugged; and Yah Yah brings enough attitude ("if they shut down this club, then I'll shut down your block!") to keep it street like Puff or Timba just dream they could do. It ends with Yah leading a drunken chorus, "somebody say: light that weed (light that weed!), say spike that drink (spike that drink!); fight outside; y'all niggas better fight outside!"

So Yah Yah hs split with 5th Lmnt (and I believe moved back from Florida), but he's still doing music. He has a myspace here where you can hear some tracks he's working on now. Someone really needs to give this guy an Eminem-size budget and just let him do whatever the hell he wants with all the best producers for a heavily marketed album. It would be ill.

Update 9/20/08: There's some kind of error which makes the first song, "All I Need Is Some Love," break up near the end. By "break up," I mean cutting out to silence and back in again, very quickly, for about the last 20 seconds or so. This is true of every copy released (I know; I now have more than one). It's not horrendous (it's after all the MCing is done with, anyway), but it sure is annoying and probably killed any chance this promo single had of actually getting any promo plays. But, yeah... there is no version without this defect out there, so us fans've just gotta live with it.

1 comment:

  1. I have a copy of "Lord Of The Underground".
    I don't mean just a folder of Mp3s, either.
    I mean the disc with a cover from 5thlmnt.

    Hit me up on AIM.
    My screen name is "Flake Says" (Obviously).

    Leave me an "offline message" next time you get on, or something, because most of the time I have it set to "invisible".
    (This is my secondary screen name for online people)