Mike G said in a 2019 interview that he’d never met anyone as chill as him before Afrika Baby Bam. In one of hip-hop’s truly great years, the two MCs advanced a bold New York scene with quintessential funk. Despite its influence, Straight Out the Jungle’s credit has often been redirected to its, albeit brilliant, neighbours. De La Soul’s (1989) and Tribe’s (1990) debuts elaborated on the formula, but Jungle Brothers’ own first full-length must be regarded as a breakthrough discovery in hip-hop and not a monochrome blueprint. SOTJ is a benchmark of Afrocentrism that pioneered jazzy self-assurance, a fun embrace of club culture, and spiritually conscious rhymes.
A favourite: ‘Because I Got It Like That’