Filed under: Album Reviews
Kurious goes down as yet another one of those hip hop artists who showed much promise but who also never managed to translate this into a career of any longevity. Hailing from Spanish Harlem in Uptown Manhattan, Kurious originally appeared on Pete Nice and Daddy Rich’s album ‘Dust II Dust’ before releasing his debut ‘A Constipated Monkey’. Apart from a few appearances on other albums of the era (most notably KMD’s ‘Black Bastards’ and Gravediggaz’s ‘Six Feet Deep’) this is basically the only record where you get a decent flava for the Puerto Rican MC. This is a pity as the album is a strong release that should have at least propelled him onto a sophomore effort.
Particularly note-worthy is the production roster which features work from the Beatnuts, the SD50s (check Jaz’s post at ColdRockDaSpot for more info on the crew) and one track by the Prime Minister himself Pete Nice. This line-up should speak for itself and the end product is by no means a disappointment. Jazzy loops, slammin’ drums… you know the deal. ‘Walk Like A Duck’ was the first 12” to see a release which I find slightly surprising due to its slow pace although it is still a choice cut from the album. ‘Uptown Shit’ followed and for me would have been the better choice of lead off single due to its upbeat party vibe.
His verses over the course of the album are also enjoyable, featuring a relaxed delivery and a sense of wit to boot. This is not to say that he is the most gifted of MCs but he can certainly hold his own alongside some guest spots by Casual and Psycho Les. In all honesty, there really isn’t a bad cut on the album which makes Kurious’ disappearance from the scene all the stranger.
There was a ‘comeback’ single that surfaced in 2001 called ‘All Great’ that I picked up when it was released but it clearly made little impact and there has been nothing heard of him since. For this reason he goes down as yet another casualty of the genre who you can’t help but feel should have been bigger than he was. Still, this is a solid and enjoyable album that definitely qualifies as slept on, although I feel that labelling this as classic material would be a step too far. Let me know what you think.