Crash Crew – We Are Known As Emcees
1. Breakin Bells (Take Me to the Mardi Gras)
2. We Are Known Emcees
3. On The Radio
4. We Want To Rock
5. 2-4-6-8 (Her We Are Waiting for you)
6. Mc Wars
7. We Want You To Dance
8. Scratching (Instrumental)
9. Ice Cream
10. Reggae Scratch
11. Charlie Brown
12. High Powered Rap
13. On The Radio (Instrumental)
14. 2-4-6-8 (Here We Are Wait
15. All Alone
This CD is an absolute must for anybody who is a fan of the mighty Crash!!! The compilation is one in a series of Sugarhill reissues called “back to the old school.2”. The entire series is on point, with other discs that feature the Funky 4+1 and Sequence, as well as a set called “Sugarhill Club Classics” that features three volumes…each volume is a double disc set!!! There very well done, from the great pictures on the covers of each disc that features Hip Hop culture as it really was….the Crash Crew CD cover has a B/W pic of a non-descript Hip Hop crew circa ’77-’82 rockin’ a park jam complete with speakers sitting on top of a trash can and a rope to keep the crowd away from the equipment. The Funky 4+1 CD has a great color photo from that same time period featuring an electric boogie cipher with a kid pop-lockin’ in an all red Izod short set, knee-hi tube socks with 5 red stripes and blue suede pumas….now that’s old school!!!!! The folks over at Sequel were also kind enough to take the time to put in some decent (and mostly accurate) liner notes. This is a major plus for all you collectors out there, as I have come across more than my share of compilation discs that either have no liner notes at all, or totally screwed up info. I recommend this series to anybody who collects old school Hip Hop or is just a fan of any of the Sugarhill rap acts.
Having said that, let me talk about this disc in particular, which features all of the Crash Crews biggest joints from there Sugarhill days plus a few extra treats…and one HUGE disappointment. The good news first, in addition to you all their popular joints (Breakin’ Bells; We Are Known As Emcees; On The Radio; 2-4-6-8), there are a couple of unreleased gems (We Want To Rock; MC Wars) and instrumentals (On The Radio; Scratching; 2-4-6-8) thrown in for good measure. Although “We Want To Rock” is listed as previously unreleased, I have seen it on other compliation discs…but for a good reason, the song is hot. The song MC Wars is a Run-DMC diss, supposedly because of the use of Mardi Gras on Peter Piper, which was originally rocked by the Crash on Breakin’ Bells. The Crash Crew returned the favor by rockin’ this joint over an Aerosmith riff.
Now to the bad….the album does have a few tracks that you’ll be skipping past (Ice Cream; Reggae Scratch; Charlie Brown). There’s also another not-so-hot attempt at an MC trying to sing (All Alone). Few crews from this era really had the skills to pull it off…the Force MC’s/MD’s obviously were the most successful at this but, Rahiem & the rest of the Furious 5 are also among the exceptions, as was the Sugarhill Gang with the song, “Here I Am”. Another minor let down is the version of “Breakin’ Bells” which appears here…it is not the original 12″ version, as it has an altered intro and outro. The rest of the song is intact though, so it’s nothing to cry about. This is however, a similar issue on another song on this set that is far more distressing. For me, and apparently other folks who bought the CD, the main attraction was the inclusion of “High Powered Rap” on the disc. That alone, would have made this CD a MUST-HAVE. Unfortunately, the track that is included here is supposedly a demo version of the original classic. It clocks in at 1:53 (yes, one minute) and is nothing more than a uninspired walk through of the original first verse over a drum machine and a cheesy synth-bass line. TOTAL GARBAGE!!!!!
After getting over that disappointment, though, you’ll come to appreciate the rest of the CD for what it’s worth. A solid package of all the essential Crash Crew songs from their run with Sugarhill. Although you may be able to find 3 or 4 of these songs on other compilations, the extras that are here, plus the quality of the packaging make it still very much worth picking up. Submitted by EyeGetzRaw