The Latino rappers of the 1980s and 1990s often brought a strong regional flavor to their music. While Cypress Hill, A Lighter Shade of Brown, Kid Frost and tha Mexakinz were very much a product of L.A.'s Mexican-American or Chicano experience, Mesanjarz of Funk favored a strong "Nuyorican" approach to hardcore rap on this enjoyable, if a bit uneven, debut album. These Latinos from the Bronx are instantly recognizable as New York rappers--they have sizable technique, and they aren't shy about showing it off and providing a lot of tricky tongue-twisters. The thing that separates Mesanjarz of Funk from New York's non-Latino MCs is their bilingual outlook. While most of the lyrics are English, Mesanjarz inject a fair amount of Spanish rapping on exhilarating numbers like "Keep it Flowin'," "Spanish Flavor" and "Buckwild Boricua." Hearing Mesangarz rap is a lot of like listening to a talented jazz virtuoso who is putting too much emphasis on showing off his or her chops -- you know that the artist is overdoing it with technique, but you have to admire that technique nonetheless. Unfortunately, this CD fell through the cracks and turned out to be Mesanjarz' only Atlantic album.
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AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson
feat: Lord Finesse