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Ice Cube is one of the most enduring, versatile, controversial and engaging figures ever to emerge out of hip-hop. At 30, he is one of this generation's cultural icons. After establishing himself as a film phenomenon, acclaimed actor, screenwriter, director and producer, Ice Cube(born O'Shea Jackson) comes back to his solo music career with a vengeance. "War & Peace - Vol. 2 (The Peace Disc).
The first volume "War" was released on November 17, 1998 on Priority Records with "Peace" following on March 21, 2000. Just as his classic Death Certificate presented a "Death Side" and a "Life Side", Cube explores the war/peace dialectic in well over 2 hours of new music.
Further fueling rumors of a NWA reunion album, this album opens with the simple greeting "Hell Low", a Dre produced selection (co-produced by Mel Man) featuring Dr. Dre and MC Ren; a comedic track "You Ain't Gotta Lie" featuring Chris Rock and appearances by Krayzie Bone on the commercial single "Until We Rich." Other notable artists featured on the album are Mack 10 and Jayo Felony with production on several tracks by Chucky Thompson, Battlecat, and Puffy to name a few.
Producers include: Carl "Chucky" Thompson, Battlecat, One Eye, Sean "Puffy" Combs, Bud'da.
Includes liner notes by Jeff Chang.
Personnel: Pain In Da Ass (vocals); Ralphie Boy, Chris "The Glove" Taylor (keyboards); Ms. Toi, Traci Nelson (background vocals).
Audio Mixers: Claude "Swifty" Achille; Dr. Dre.
Photographer: Davis Factor.
The second volume of WAR & PEACE proved that Ice Cube had not mellowed with age, the strains of a critically acclaimed film career notwithstanding. Much of the disc aspires to the sort of relentless intensity Cube hadn't matched since his solo debut, AMERIKKA'S MOST WANTED. While more restrained than the Bomb Squad's hyperkinetic collages of sound, Dr. Dre's laid-back grooves are a perfect match for Cube's acerbic ghetto wit and biting social commentary. Rolling drum programming and bouncy Roger Troutman-style basslines give the album an old-school feel. Much of the album marries intense grooves and polished production with humorous skits; "Pimp Homeo," for example, is a funny takeoff on ROMEO AND JULIET. Tracks like "Until We Rich," on the other hand, are more laid-back R&B affairs, with more reflective, socially conscious lyrics. While nothing on the set approaches the political and social fire that categorize AMERIKKA'S MOST WANTED, WAR & PEACE still manages to showcase a rap legend at the top of his form.
Rolling Stone (5/11/00, p.131) - 3 stars out of 5 - "...Makes an argument for Cube's longevity....We see the badass spiritual resiliency that made Cube so worth imitating in the first place."
Entertainment Weekly (3/24/00, p.102) - "...rough-and-tumble celebrations of gangsta life....Cube's stern vocal presence dominates. No, movie stardom hasn't dulled his edge..." - Rating: B-
Q (5/00, p.110) - 3 stars out of 5 - "...Ice Cube is still angry. At least he's trying to be....A forefather of gangsta rap....[He] sounds like an old man edging out of a young man's game. Deep down, he knows it..."
The Wire (4/00, p.53) - "...[Cube] celebrates his irritation with industry hangers on, record company CEOs, and hustling young rappers....Production is fat and sassy with plenty of slick moves..."
CMJ (4/3/00, p.35) - "...Easily his dopest shit in years, ...PEACE takes to the dancefloor with the energy of landmark works such as KILL AT WILL and DEATH CERTIFICATE..."
Vibe (5/00, p.172) - "...Travels between gangster stylings and conscious rap....Ice Cube provides something for 'all' of his fans....VOL. 2 is a free-flowing smattering of styles..."
The Source (5/00, pp.212,214) - 3.5 mics out of 5 - "...He returns to his incendiary roots and delivers a strong album....Cube sounds invigorated here....quality hard-core music....He still reigns as one of hip-hop's most insightful - and important - artists."
Pimp Homeo (Insert)
You Ain't Gotta Lie (Ta Kick It) - (featuring Chris Rock)
Gutter S***, The - (featuring Jayo Felony/Gangsta/Squeak Ru)