The borough of Queens is filled with a rich culture and history within the Hip-Hop industry. Through these hollowed halls lays the legends of our culture such as Marley Marl, LL Cool J, Run DMC, A Tribe Called Quest, the whole Juice Crew, Mobb Deep & Nas. If there is one borough that depicts such a distinct sound it is instantaneously recognizable it is Queens. Hardcore Hip-Hop, that is what Q.B. represents ever since the Juice Crew days that. Depicting this style and continuing the tradition is the second installment in the Q.B.'s Finest series entitled "The Saga Continues". While the series first edition was put together by Nas and was nationally distributed and recognized, this edition goes the underground route, as most hardly know of its release.
While not filled with new material, "The Saga Continues" features some of the finest Q.B. tracks over the past couple of years. Giving those not so blessed a time to shine, the album features a good variety of up and coming emcees as well as some veterans. Crime Fam's "We Get It Poppin", "Move Like This" featuring veteran Tragedy Khadfi along with Littles & Trezy and "Money, Murder, Homicide" by Kamakaze, Troy Sluggs and the legendary Marley Marl behind the boards are all nice introductions into Q.B.'s lesser know emcees, along with some help from the veterans.
As expected Mobb Deep plays a big role in the album's picture. However, both "Bonafied" and "Shortie Wildin" are less than impressive, especially in the production area, and are your basic throwaway tracks. The Mobb's affiliates actually turn out better performances as seen on "The Streets Of NYC" featuring Noyd, Chinky & The Infamous Mobb, "Bump That Remix" by Havoc, 50 Cent & Noyd and the Alchemist produced "Shoot Em Up Bang Bang" by the underrated Big Noyd. Alchemist once again laces pure gold for Noyd as he continues to dominate the game this year. While The Infamous Mobb and Big Noyd can hold their own independently, artists such as Chinky and former running mates Bars & Hooks have yet to prove able to do so. Chinky's "Lean On Me" & "My Thuns" are average efforts along the wretched "Diamond" by Bars & Hooks seen on Prodigy's "H.N.I.C." album.
Of course a plethora of various Q.B. artists show up for the remainder of the album such as Screwball on "Real Life", Cormega on "Just Listen", Craig G on "You Think You Special" and Nas along with Horse & E-Money Bags on "Want It". Making the biggest splash however is the Thug Poet on the two DJ Premier bangers "Poet's Comin" & "We Gonna Ill" Both are vintage Primo sounds as Poet spits intense hunger on the mic. "We Gonna Ill" is definitely an overlooked gem as upon its release was one of the hottest underground tracks out.
While "The Saga Continues" is a nice pick up for Q.B. fans everywhere, its only downfall is its premise. It's more or less a mixtape thrown together that really doesn't have any flow. The albums overall production could have definitely been put together better. Still the album features a nice variety of tracks and those not familiar already with surly be surprised in what they have been missing. The saga definitely continues for Queens as it always has. And while the years go by and artists come and go, the sound always remains the same, true to life.