Although they were only together for five years, N.W.A quickly cemented their place in music history as the quintessential gangster rap group. Collecting some of the finer moments from the group's compact discography, Icon takes a look back at the songs that helped shape the face of rap for decades to come. With tracks like "Straight Outta Compton," "100 Miles and Runnin'," and "Appetite for Destruction," Icon pulls tracks from both of the iconic group's full-length albums. As one would expect, the album draws heavily from 1988's Straight Outta Compton, which features some of their strongest work, and rounds out the track list with cuts from 1991's Niggaz4Life as well as their 1990 EP 100 Miles and Runnin'. Although it only has 11 tracks, they're arguably some of the most influential songs in rap, helping not only to launch the genre into the mainstream with the controversy that surrounded the album's violent content, but also to launch the careers of greats like Dr. Dre and Ice Cube.
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AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney