Weekday Wayback: The Pharcyde - Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde
Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde, released in 1992, was The Pharcyde's debut album and is widely considered one of the best albums from the early 90's era of hip-hop. Emanating from LA, The Pharcyde staunchly contrasted the West Coast gansta rap that flooded their scene. From a musical standpoint, the jazzy production and the brilliant use of sampling - which includes the sounds of Jimi Hendrix, James Brown and Quincy Jones - contributes to the upbeat and playful soundscape of the album. Bizarre Ride is comprised of lyrically complex yet comedic banter among the group's four members about mom jokes, outlandish sexual experiences, and self-depreciating anecdotes. Surprisingly, The Pharcyde successfully maintained their integrity by carefully balancing their crude humor with a plethora of socially insightful lyrics and reflective narratives. Even in the early 1990's, when hip-hop was arguably still on the cutting edge of youth culture, The Pharcyde remarkably took no hesitation in acknowledging that they were "rappin' for the white man" in the track "It's Jigaboo Time". For anyone with a taste for 90's hip-hop, Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde is a must-listen.