Cutty Ranks

Six Million Ways to Die

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    7
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AllMusic Review by

"Now this is for the boys in the street," is the first catch phrase to open Six Million Ways to Die and sets the tone for the rest of the album. Gun talk and slackness rule the album, with Cutty Ranks giving a smooth early-'90s delivery on all the tracks. Every track on Six Million Ways to Die is a rude-boy anthem and typical of the gun-obsessed dancehall of the time. Like Mad Cobra's, Beenie Man's, and Bounty Killer's recordings of the same era, a line rarely passes without a reference to bad-man activity. Cutty Ranks' rhythmic delivery gives a unique edge to tracks that lack subtly even in name, like "Undertaker," "Time to Die," and "Hitman." The huge single "A Who She Me Dun" alternates tempos and shows Cutty Ranks' best performance on the album. The opening statement on the song which became the album title was eventually sampled by Dr. Dre for his The Chronic album. "A Who Seh Me Dun" appears later in a bizarrely laid-back remix that appears to be an attempt at an American crossover hit. By stripping all the energy out of the original, what remains is a soft melody with a weak drumbeat. Minus the often embarrassing crossover attempt, Six Million Ways to Die is a classic album of '90s gun talk. Cutty Ranks made an impressive bad-man record that did not put the subject to rest but probably expanded it into a genre of its own.

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