MC Lyte

Eyes on This

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    7
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A rapper with considerable technique and a fine sense of humor, Lyte was one of the most highly regarded female MCs of the late '80s and early '90s -- especially on the East Coast. Eyes on This, the Brooklyn native's second album, tends to be one-dimensional lyrically -- she spends too much time bragging about how superior her rapping skills are and how inept sucker MCs are. Though it's hard not to admire the technique and strong chops she displays on such boasting fare as "Shut the Eff Up! (Hoe)" -- an attack on Lyte's nemesis, Antoinette -- and "Slave 2 the Rhythm," she's at her best when telling some type of meaningful story. Undeniably, the CD's standout track is "Cappuccino," an imaginative gem in which Lyte stops by a Manhattan cafe and gets caught in the crossfire of rival drug dealers. In the afterlife, she asks herself: "Why, oh why, did I need cappuccino?" Were everything on the album in a class with "Cappuccino," it would have been an outstanding album instead of simply a good one.

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