On this day in Hip Hop history famed duo Gang Starr released the re-issue of their debut album No More Mr. Nice Guy. Usually known for their conscious messages that swam against the tide of the industry, Gang Starr’s debut was unlike the remainder of their discography. Heavily influenced by the underground, and on theme with the title, this project showed the more braggadocio side of the duo. Like any debut album, Gang Starr used this project to flaunt their musical ability and claim their spot on the totem pole.
Coming out when it did, this project was in the midst of a shift in Hip Hop culture. The days of the B-Boy and the Adidas tracksuits were coming to a close and the 90s were slowly approaching. This cultural limbo provided a new lane for Gang Starr to utilize with their style. Still showing much influence from their old school predecessors, the album had a boom bap feel with a slight new edge about it. The simplicity of DJ Premier‘s production allowed for Guru to attack lyrically in a way that would be rare throughout the remainder of his career.
Commercially, this album was as successful as anyone could ask a debut to be. In an era where Hip Hop was still having trouble gaining popularity among the masses, No More Mr. Nice Guy was able to claim the #83 stop on the Top R&B chart along with the single “Positivity” grabbing the #19 spot on the Billboard Rap Singles chart.
Following this project, Gang Starr went on to become one of the most respected duos in rap. Apart from Gang Starr, DJ Premier grew to become a super producer throughout the 90s being one of the staple producers of that era’s unique sound. Take some time today to listen to the album that started one of the biggest careers in Hip Hop.