Tame-One is back! New Jersey’s notty-headed terror has returned with a brand new EP to give hype to his new album. Originally scoring big with the song “The Wrong Side Of The Tracks” in his group The Artifacts, Tame-One released 2 albums in the group that loved Newark, smoking weed, and graffiti. Eventually, he went solo and released his debut album “When Rappers Attack” on Eastern Conference Records. After the critically acclaimed LP, he dropped off the radar again. In 2004, he has returned with his side project, The Leak Brothers (Cage & Tame-One). “Waterworld” LP is more of an ode to angel dust. While dust bunnies are smoking “Crazy Eddie” and listening to The Leak Brothers, fans of Tame-One’s solo career may be interested to know that he is coming out with another solo album (“Spazmatic”) completely produced by Xing N Fox. “Da Muzik” EP is just a little taste of what we can expect. As always, Tame-One blows people’s minds like PCP.
The title track, “Da Muzik” is just a little taste of this unique and wild collaboration between Tame-One and Xing N Fox. Using the familiar sample of the 80’s track “When I Hear Music” by Debbie Deb, Xing N Fox add some serious drum and bass rhythms and melodies. Tame-One delivers a more Southern style double-time flow but his East Coast / New Jersey roots are maintained. Tame’s style and delivery along with clever lyrics makes his verses spectacular: "...Every now and then I get a paper and a pen and write another way to win / People want to bite, they better order catering / I’m already working on another 8 of them I got a tape of them / and you can pay for them instead of taking them / I be banging em out without a doubt let me find out / people down south will let me black out / treat a woman like a track and blow the back out / cause I’m back in the lab / acid tab / vocab and all / the only nicks I don’t hit play basketball...” Due to the sample, the beat, and the flow, the song could be commercial enough to be a party starter but the lyrics and atmosphere of it maintains the track’s underground roots. For the chorus, Tame half sings / half talks, “…Something about the music / It gets into my head / Something about the music…” Production wise, Xing N Fox bring a more electronic / jungle / drum & bass feel to the track. This is new territory for Tame-One but he handles himself well. His mastered breath control is right up there with Twista and Ludacris. The drum tracks and the production sound dirty and not as expensive as the more polished jungle or drum & bass collaborations with hip-hop emcees. The instrumental version of the track lets the listener feel the music by itself but the “Street Version” is the true gem out of three (“Street Version”, “Radio Version”, and “Instrumental”). “Da Muzik” is an excellent track in every way.
Tame-One is no stranger to drugs or drug music. “Let’s Get F*cked Up” is another hardcore drug anthem. From the man who calls himself “Druggie Fresh” from “The Get Wet Crew”, Tame-One and PCP go hand in hand. For those who haven’t had enough of Tame-One’s angel dust loving songs from “Waterworld”, “Let’s Get F*cked Up” is thick track that serves as an anthem for New Jersey drug users. His clever lyrics remain: “…Something to sniff with a quill / Hidden inside a dollar bill / I’m expected to always come back like steering wheels…” Using tons of drug references, there are many battle rap lines that that claim how strong he is and how weak the enemy is. “I’m hard as a rock / You’re powder, b*tch!”. Another favorite line is: “…I’m a Vicodin / You? A Flintstone vitamin…” Tame goes on: “I’m an overdose / You’re a slight buzz / I’m angel dust / You’re an aspirin / Just say no if somebody’s asking…” For the hook, Redman’s voice is sampled as Tame-One chants, “Let’s get f*cked up”. At first listen, it may sound like just another drug track, but there is dirty and clever energy that Tame brings to the song. Production wise, Xing N Fox make the beat chug along like slow-moving psychedelic train. Once again, the beat does have a dirty and less polished sound but it does not move with fluidity like “Da Muzik” does. Since the song “Let’s Get F*cked Up” is for getting and being high, there is a reason for the difference. The “Instrumental” is fun but does not have the same impact as “Da Muzik” instrumental. The “Radio Version” is a waste of time since all of the good drug references and the profanity is just taken out. If they truly wanted to do a version for the radio, they could have re-worded some of the verses or added some sound effects instead.
“Da Muzik” is just an introduction to what Tame-One and Xing N Fox can do. If this is just a taste, their upcoming “Spazmatic” LP should be a must-have for any Tame-One fan. If pushed right with some radio airplay, “Da Muzik” could do wonders for Tame-One. While fans of Artifacts were not used to the beats he picked on “When Rappers Attack”, “Da Muzik” has Tame-One pushing the boundaries even further. His rhyme style is even elevated. His breath control is mind-blowing. The mixture of clever lyricism, flow, humor make Tame-One an excellent emcee. “Da Muzik” single was overshadowed by the release of “Waterworld” by The Leak Brothers (Cage & Tame-One). “Da Muzik” single is that diamond in the rough. Xing N Fox and Tame-One do have that chemistry. For those who are just getting used to Tame-One rapping over beats by Camu Tao, J-Zone, and El-P, they are in for a whole new sound and experience when he rhymes over beats by Xing N Fox. Hip-hop is in good hands when emcees like Tame-One continue to push the boundaries of beat picking, delivery, and lyricism. “Let’s get f*cked up” to “Da Muzik”!