Black Sheep

Non-Fiction

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Three years isn't an especially long time between albums, but in hip-hop an epoch separated 1991 from 1994. That made it especially difficult for Black Sheep to follow up their prescient debut, and unfortunately, it appeared they'd run out of significant ideas after just one LP. Non-Fiction is bland where A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing was exciting, stiff and rigid instead of dexterous, and most astonishing of all, unreflective and self-serious where their debut had been imaginative and playful. "Autobiographical" is an interesting opener, telling the story of Black Sheep's transition from New York to Carolina and back, but despite some smooth raps and interesting wordplay, nothing else here says anything. The smooth club single "Without a Doubt" is the only track catchy enough to rank with the first record, and Black Sheep's sharp social critiques were entirely missing. Similar to the Pharcyde, their stylistic brothers from the West Coast, the sophomore slump hit Black Sheep particularly hard, and practically destroyed them as creative artists.

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