UK Hip Hop: Artists & Discographies
Kurupt - Space Boogie: Smoke Oddessey
Kurupt - It's Over
At this point in his rapidly developing career, KURUPT (aka Young Gotti) needs little introduction to anyone who has been keeping tabs on who's who in West Coast Hip Hop. Space Boogie: Smoke Oddessey is Kurupt's highly anticipated third LP and sees him changing musically to produce what some have said is 'his most ambitious artistic endeavor ever'. 

It is no accident that this record comes at this particular time in his life when the MC is struggling to come to grips with his new found status as superstar and commercial product. He explains to us what his thoughts behind the record, 'This album is more mature musically. I decided to call the album Space Boogie: Smoke Oddessey because it's like traveling through my inner thoughts and taking people into a whole new realm. It's like a road map through my mind and into places where I never thought I could expose. I'm more or less sharing my inner thoughts and letting people into my mental maze.' 

Young Gotti has assembled an impressive array of talent to ride with him on this musical excursion. Executive produced by Farid 'Fredwreck' Nasir and Joe Marrone, Space Boogie features big names like: Xzibit, Nate Dogg, Tha Liks, Daz, NWA's MC Ren, Jon B, Everlast, and Limp Bizkit's Fred Durst with production by Fredwreck, Daz Dillinger, Soopafly, DJ Quik, Jon B, and Limp Bizkit's DJ Lethal. 

The album's first single, 'It's Over', (produced by new talents Jeeky Man and Charm) features an annoying 'Annie' type sung chorus and Natina Reed showing off her rap skills in the second verse and is released over here on September 10th through Pias Recordings. Rhyme partner, Daz Dillinger, produces and appears on 'On Da Grind' and co-produced a second song, 'Gangstas' with Mike Dean. 

Snoop Dogg and Goldie Loc of Tha Eastsidaz keep it gangsta with Kurupt on 'Bring Back That G Shit.' Kurupt, Fred Durst and DJ Lethal (LimpBizkit), and Nate Dogg trade verses on the smooth but funky, 'Lay It On Back,' a song that reflects Kurupt's new outlook on life. 

'Fred Durst and I were coming from the aspect that we were two artists who were in transition from wild-eyed youth to elders in the game. We threw Nate Dogg in there to twist it.' 

'Sunshine' produced by and featuring Jon B is a heartfelt tribute to his lady love. But just before fans begin to think that Kurupt has forgotten his roots in the streets, tracks like 'Hardest Muthafuckas' featuring Xzibit, Nate Dogg, and MC Ren hit you with a dose of vintage Kurupt. 

Kurupt debuted on the world stage as a part of the team that brought you some huge selling classcs, such as Dr. Dre's multi-platinum The Chronic (1992) and Snoop Dogg's debut LP Doggystyle (1993). Both records helped establish West Coast Hip Hop's growing cultural supremacy in the pop charts. 

Kurupt's appearance on both of these groundbreaking albums has earned him a reputation of being 'one of Hip Hop's boldest and most talented lyricists' and certainly one of the foremost proponents of West Coast Hip Hop. Kurupt explains that, 'We were really just making music for our community back in LA'. 

In 1994 Kurupt and Daz Dillinger teamed up as Tha Dogg Pound, releasing their debut 'Dogg Food' on Suge Knight's infamous Death Row Records the following year. The album went platinum. 

Now the whole world was starting to catch on to this Philly born, Los Angeles raised MC, whose lyrics and flow encompass some of what makes up the best of both East and West Coast styles. 

In 1998, Kurupt released his well received debut solo album, Kuruption, a double disc set featuring collaborations with various MCs from across the US. Having so many guest spots obviously helped raise his profile and pointed to Kurupt's business savvy attitude to the music business. But by sharing the spotlight with such diverse artists as Snoop Dogg, Noreaga, and Canibus showed that Young Gotti was indeed a versatile MC. 

Kurupt recalls his first solo effort: 'On my first solo album, I wanted all sorts of artists on it. I didn't pay attention to who was from the West Coast and who was from the East Coast. I just wanted rappers who I respected. I was more-or-less networking on that album.' 

The following year, Kurupt unleashed his follow up LP, 'Tha Streetz Iz A Mutha' to many Hip Hop fans eagerly waiting to hear the lyricist do what he does best, 'spit hardcore lyrics laced with straight drama from the streets'. The album apparently sold 125,000 copies in LA alone!

According to Kurupt, that LP brought him back to the days when he was a hungry youngster trying to get on in the rap game. 'Tha Streetz Iz A Mutha was about the youthful Kurupt,' he explains. 'I have many sides and on Tha Streetz, my wild side came out to take fans on a tour through the streets of L.A. As wild as it may have been to Kurupt, Tha Streetz Iz A Mutha earned him his first gold record and is considered by many to be his best lyrical work to date. 

The arrival of the new millennium saw a continuation in the general move to a more commercial chart oriented attitude towards Hip Hop. This also garnered a renewed interest in West Coast Hip Hop manifested by Kurupt's musical mentors Dr.Dre and Snoop Dogg reuniting to record the Chronic 2001 and headline the very successful Up In Smoke Tour. 

Once again Kurupt found himself at the forefront of Hip Hop only this time instead of being a new jack, he was becoming an elder statesmen, a position that he admits he is still growing into. He accepts the honor with great humility, 'We've been doing this for a minute, so I am honored to be considered a part of the movement that helped put it down for West Coast Hip Hop. 

Showing his respect he credits Dr. Dre and Snoop for the role both men play in his life, 'Dr. Dre talks to you about the game. He's been in the business longer than all of us. Dre's like The Wizard. He hollers at me from an artistic perspective. Snoop talks to me about life. Snoop made me realise that there is a lot more at stake now than when we started out. When you're young you do things that you think are important to you like chasing girls, acting wild and stuff like that. I'm burnt out on all that. After a while you're priorities change. I'm just trying to see life in a whole new way and show the other sides of Kurupt.' 

While Snoop and Dre help to keep Kurupt's game tight, there is yet another person whom he credits with helping to keep him focused on his goals. That's his fiancťe Natina Reed of the group, Blaque. 'She's in the music industry and knows a lot about the game,' says Kurupt. 'She keeps me balanced and helps me stay on point.' 

In addition to all the heat Kurupt is bringing on this new LP, he makes his acting debut this year in the much anticipated theatrical release, The Plague Season, starring Kurt Russell, Ving Rhames, and Michael Michelle. The film is directed by Ron Shelton of White Men Can't Jump and Eve's Bayou. The Plague Season is a drama set within the LAPD during the turbulent April, 1992 week leading up to the verdict of the Rodney King trial, and the subsequent riots. 

He is also filming a major role in the upcoming independent release Keepin' It Real starring Tiny 'Zeus' Lister and The Wash directed by Dr. Dre and DJ Pooh (co-writer of Friday). 

Overall the album sees Kurupt mellow with age and tread a familiar path of artists who are in the process of watering down their music to placate labels in the hope of increasing sales. Well the plan often works and for Kurupt it is working as well. This album is best described as safe G-Funk, nothing special or new is delivered here. His press exclaims this is 'One giant step for Hip Hop'. If anything I would say this record harks back to the days when the G in G-Funk stood for Gangster, but in the modernisation process has become deeply sanitised and formulaic. Potentially the two tracks that do it most for me are the more East Coast sounding ones - The Hardest featuring Xzibit (on form), Nate Dogg and MC Ren (who was so underrated in NWA) and surprisingly the track featuring Fred Durst, DJ Lethal and Nate Dogg - Lay It On Back. Also pleasing is Just Don't Give A ... with a typically groovy bassline, again featuring DJ Lethal and Kuruption with a great refrain featuring Everlast. Maybe feeling he can't cut it on his own on a track, out of 17 there are only two which don't feature guest MCs.

For those unfamiliar with Kurupt three tracks from the album can be heard at later this week. Three more tracks will be added each week until the entire album can be heard on the official site. The full length video to It's Over will also be available on the site soon. Check out some of the tracks here:

It's Over (feat. Natina Reed)
Real audio
Windows streaming format

Can't Go Wrong (feat. DJ Quik & Butch Cassidy)
Real audio
Windows streaming format

Hate On Me (feat. Soopafly and Damani)
Real audio
Windows streaming format

Space Boogie (feat. Nate Dogg)
Real audio
Windows streaming format

The Hardest... (feat. Xzibit, Nate Dogg & MC Ren)
Real audio
Windows streaming format

It's Over has already received airplay on Radio 1 while the video has been on MTV and The Box. Released on CD, cassette and vinyl the single includes two previously unreleased tracks - The Life I Live and Ride Wit Us. The CD version also comes with the full video to the single - which can be viewed on your computer.

As part of the marketing effort for the single Kurupt is giving fans an exclusive chance to install a snippet of his forthcoming single Itís Over as their mobile phone ring tone. The first 2000 people to visit the American starís official website at can download the tone Ė weeks before Itís Over is released on October 1. 

The ring tone clip is instantly recognisable as Itís Over has been receiving widespread airplay and the video has been on both MTV and The Box. And by downloading the ringtone fans automatically enter into a competition to win customized clothing. 

There's a customized Avirex flying jacket up for grabs for men to win while women will be entered into a draw for customized Levi's jacket and pair of jeans.

 Way To Blue

Space Boogie: Smoke Oddessey Track Listing
1.  Intro: Countdown 
2.  Space Boogie ft. Nate Dogg
3.  Hate on Me ft. Soopafly & Daman
4.  On da Grind ft. Daz
5.  It's Over ft. Natina Reed
6.  Can't Go Wrong ft. DJ Quik & Butch Cassidy
7.  On, Onsite ft. Lil 1/2 Dead
8.  Sunshine ft. Jon B
9.  The Hardest... ft. Xzibit, Nate Dogg & MC Ren 
10. Gangsta's 
11. Bring Back That G... ft. Snoop Doggy Dogg & Goldie Loc
12. Lay It on Back ft. Fred Durst, DJ Lethal & Nate Dogg
13. Just Don't Give A... ft. DJ Lethal
14. At It Again 
15. Kuruption ft. Everlast
16. Da World ft. Daz 
17. B****es ft. Roscoe & Butch Cassidy

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