Sir Vicious: The Best of Just-Ice

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Sounding like a golden age mix of Schoolly D, Kool Moe Dee, and Ice-T, New York rapper Just-Ice's back catalog is compiled on this two-disc set, which kicks off with the Kurtis Mantronik-produced "Cold Gettin' Dumb," a breakdancer's delight. Fans from back in the day might jump right for the naughty highlight "Latoya," a nasty 1986 novelty favorite that sounds like a Redd Foxx routine run over Run-D.M.C. beats; plus there's the follow-up porno hit "That Girl Is a Slut," which busts out enough cuss words to suggest this comp should be sold in a plain brown wrapper and kept behind the counter. Still, Just-Ice was more than just a smut peddler, as "Na Touch da Just" and "It's Time I Release" are some prime early examples of golden age reggae-rap, while "Moshitup" gets a co-sign from professor KRS-One, besides being the first appearance of the hip-hop trope "Suicide, it's a suicide." The album ends with four cuts from The Masterpiece, the rapper's 1990 effort with Grandmaster Flash as producer, then it jumps to his 1998 effort VII for two numbers, skipping 1993's bad-but-not-dreadful Gun Talk entirely. Fan favorite "Little Bad Johnny" from the first album is missing as well, meaning Sir Vicious isn't the perfect Just-Ice compilation, but it's certainly the first great one.

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