C-Murder – Life or Death (Throwback Thursday Review)

Brother of No Limit label head, C-Murder’s debut album remains one of the stronger albums of the label’s 90s run. While Master P’s music winds up hard & goofy, which is a compliment not a knock, C-Murder’s music takes a much more serious tone than his brother’s. Master P in multiple interviews talked about his music is “reality music,” reflecting the environment him & his brothers come from. While this is true, especially with a lot of his verses on the TRU album True, there became a point where Master P’s sound was more a caricature than what he claimed to represent.

C-Murder’s music on the other hand, especially on this album, plays no games. This album from the start is determined to tell you this is real with the track “A 2nd Chance.” His verse here serves as the perfect introduction to himself if you weren’t already familiar with him from the TRU albums. As he breaks down his background in the streets & his new found chance at life through music, he doesn’t take this rare chance for granted.

C-Murder – A 2nd Chance (ft. Master P & Silkk The Shocker)

The real factor still continues on “AKickDoe!” as he links up with UGK for a more southern sounding track than the more west-coast influenced production. Talking explicitly how they will handle their business, they manage to make a track so gritty yet also a hit. This is in part to Pimp C’s production choices, which have a bounce that just can’t be found in No Limit’s in-house producers Beats by the Pound. Ludacris once did an interview for GQ about Pimp C’s opening bars on the track, speaking on how real the lyrics felt to him.

Ludacris’ Thoughts on “AKickDoe!”

Constantly throughout the album, whether intentional or not, there’s this haunting feeling. The entire thing feels like a fleeting dream, or more so a nightmare. There are intros & outros to the album that feel like what could be heard at the funeral proceedings of a movie. Songs like “Picture Me” that interpolate Pac’s choruses right down to the flow feels as if his lost soul is being channeled through C-Murder. “Dreams” is one of the eeriest tracks here, in its short run time he maintains how he can’t be messed with & also how this lifestyle is one filled with paranoia.

All throughout, C-Murder makes one of the most consistent albums to touch the No Limit label. It is quite lengthy, but there’s never a dull moment to be had like the label’s other albums. With a voice that sounds like its seen too much too early, you feel every word that he delivers. Together with the heavy west coast influence, it makes for a regional blend that’s timeless.

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