"I’m ready to ride and I’m ready to die," a line by Pun on 'You Came Up.' The whole hip-hop community knows that he wasn’t ready to go this soon. He broke into the hip-hop game in 1997 with an appearance on the ever popular Beatnuts single, 'Off The Books.' Later that year, he came out with his first solo single, 'I’m Not A Player.' But, he made his name famous in the spring of 1998 with the extremely successful single 'Still Not A Player,' an r and b flavored anthem for that summer and the release of his debut 'Capital Punishment.'
Because of the success of it, he was the first Latino solo MC ever to reach platinum. Now two years later, he brings us his final offering, 'Yeeeah Baby.' Like the Notorious B.I.G., he released his album shortly after his death.
'It’s So Hard,' is the slightly dark sounding first single featuring Donnell Jones. Some lines in the background of the choruses bring out the funny side of Pun that we’ve all come to know and love. The sad part of the song is where he says, "Almost came home with a Grammy / Next year, gonna bring home three for the family," which possibly could’ve happened if his unfortunate passing never occurred.
Unfortunately, the main downfalls of this album are the almost identical sounding beats on some songs and the monotonous production. On his first LP, quality production by Rockwilder, RZA, Beatnuts and others made it an excellent piece of music. Most of the beats here don’t fit Pun very well.
Some of the better tracks include 'Leather Face,' 'Wrong Ones' and 'Laughing At You.' 'Leather Face,' (the b-side to the 'It’s So Hard' single) is the definite standout joint. The hypnotizing rock influenced beat makes this song hype and worthy of being an entrance song for a boxer. Even though he talks about "Surgery with the chainsaw," he means it in fun. 'Wrong Ones,' is a devastating blow to the stomach of an anthem with a great appearance by newcomer SunKiss. Pun’s hot lyrics are definitely showcased here and he rhymes well over a hot beat, of which the intensity reminds me of 'What’s The Difference,' by Dr. Dre. 'Laughing At You,' is a funny joint about when Pun was a young buck. Everyone used to laugh at him and that he wore glasses and look at him now. Definitely listen to the chorus because its funny to hear the way the guy says "I’m laughing at you," along with Pun saying "House on the hill / Ha, 20 inch rims / Ha," etc.
As for guest appearances, Drag-On and Fat Joe appear on 'You Was Wrong,' Brooklyn’s own M.O.P. appear on 'NY Giants.' That gets us into another small problem. On his last album, there were appearances numerously by the Terror Squad, Busta Rhymes, Black Thought, Inspectah Deck and Mobb Deep. Quite a change from then until now.
So, it is an average LP, but if you are a hardcore Pun fan, get it for your collection, but other than that, I wouldn’t really recommend it that highly. A shame Pun had to go out like this. R.I.P. Pun.