EHH Review: UTFO

utfo_album

In 1985 UTFO Dropped their first and self titled album coming off the strength of the 1984 single “Hangin Out” b/w the smash “Roxanne Roxanne”

Flanked by Full Force, Kangol Kid, Doctor Ice, The Educated Rapper, and Mix Master Ice mixed Rhymes, Harmony, and scratches to produce a very solid and underrated LP

This was back when groups had logos and individual characters and personalities … a great time of Hip Hop … the Diamond era

Leader of the Pack

“Well all across the metropolitan and USA, everybody with a mouth is talkin bout DJ Mixmaster DJ Ice, to be precise, the boy is nice”

The lead off song features classic Mix Master Ice Scratching as the crew shoutouts and gives props to their DJ (Who at this time wore all black and a ninja mask) … this was common place in Hip Hop at the time as the DJ was integral to the success and overall dopeness of a Hip Hop crew or group.
The three emcees take turns talking about how fresh their DJ is … and how much better than yours.

“He’s down by law with the Force crew, and you can say I’m on his **** cuz you are too”

Originally I thought this song would be a sample of the 1964 song by the Shangri-Las; It wasn’t (Probably for the best)

Beats and Rhymes

The second single UTFO released was more of a B Boy breaking joint … where you’d want to break out your Cardboard and get to pop lockin, this featured Full Force (Who produced the album) on the hook singing; UTFO was dope because they basically had their own in-house singers)
the flow was very retro and the video was interesting since the group did not appear in it till the very end (Kangol and Doctor Ice were breakdancers) … it was set in some sort of school party

Roxanne, Roxanne

The Crown jewel of the album and UTFO’s discography … again, originally the B-Side to their single “Hangin Out” basically chronicles each member of the group trying to court and woo the new girl on the block Roxanne
The song was dope because they didn’t paint themselves as the winners in the situation, they all got dissed; in a ego driven genre that is notable. Not only did Roxanne get the better of the group, each member playfully disses each other during the song
The beat is classic, again Full Force on the hook providing the “Roxanne roxanne”

Kangol tried after seeing her on the street
“I never lose because I’m all about winning, But if I were to lose, I wouldn’t be upset
Cause I’m not a gambler, I don’t bet I don’t be in no casino, and baby while you knizzow The izzi is the grizzeat Kizzangizzo.”

The Educated Rapper got into it with Roxanne over her misunderstanding his name and her future family plans
… which gave birth to one of the illest verses in Hip Hop IMO:

“She thought my name was Larry, I told her it was Garry
She said she didn’t like it so she chose to call me Barry
She said she’d love to marry, my baby she would carry
… and if we had a baby we’d name the baby harry
Her mother name was mary, which is really quite contrary; her face if very hairy, and you could say it’s scary
She lives in Mt Airy, her father’s a Fairy, his job is Secretary in some Military, they forced him to enlist I guess it wasn’t voluntary
His daughter’s name is Sherry, his sons are Tom and Jerry
Jerry had the flu but it was only temporary, back in January? or was it February?
But every time I say this rhyme it leaves me kinda weary
It’s only customary, to give this commentary
Some say its bad, some say it’s legendary
You can search all you want, try your local library
You’ll never find a rhyme like this in any dictionary”

CLASSIC

Fairytale Lover

The ballad of the album, a full singing ballad, NO RAPPING AT ALL! This didn’t happen on a Hip Hop album ever lol
This was the last song on the first side of the album featured Kangol Kid on lead vocals with EMD and Doc Ice on backup (More so Full Force)

Lisa Lips

Roxanne was not the only female rhymed about by the Untouchables, the song starts similar to Roxanne Roxanne; with the group talking to each other and eventually meeting Lisa (Which when Kangol introduces himself, she says “so” and he says “Stop being a little Roxanne”)
Basically Lisa is a known freak, with talented lips and a reputation around the way
The crew takes their turn rhyming about the woman, Kangol finding about her, Doc not wanting to do with her, and EMD detailing the consequences of sleeping with her.

Hanging Out

Hanging out was the first single by UTFO (The Infamous A Side to Roxanne Roxanne) the main hook of the song was it featured “The Candy Wrapper” which I originally thought was a new member of the group but it was really a whole verse by Doc Ice where he used candy brands … which at the time was pretty inventive.
The song was a throwback Hip Hop/Breaking Electro style song .. more back and forth like Beats and Rhymes heard earlier on the album.
It’s a good time song with Full Force with the assist with the harmony; classic if you grew up during that time.

roxanne

Bite It

This song has a classic intro, the scratch/beatbox hook and the gremlin style voice “yum” was very dope. In the 80s Biting was the number one offense in Hip Hop … Biting or copying was not allowed or tolerated; this song basically goes through detailing how people should have their own thing. The drum beat changes for each emcee, Kangol has some wild off-beat flow that works, Doc brings it home with a dope slowed down beat

The Real Roxanne

Because of the popularity of Roxanne’s Revenge the answer record by Roxanne Shante and the start of the Roxanne Wars; UTFO employed their own Roxanne and named her “The Real Roxanne” … which at the time seemed odd that they would be in cahoots but it worked. This Real Roxanne was Elease Jack NOT Adelaida Martinez (The puerto Rican emcee that most people know; She’s Roxanne II)
The song was actually pretty dope where she was allowed to use the original beat, and production and flipped each one of the original verses her own way… she absolutely CRUSHES the Educated rapper classic verse

“You said your name was Gary
Didn’t choose to call you Barry
Didn’t care if your name was madam mata harry
I choose to call you sonny because you have a tummy
My fathers not a fairy you’re the one who walks so funny
You’re nose is always runny
You look like bugs bunny
All your raps are old ancient as a mummy
Your house is so scummy
Your clothes are so bummy
But now with your hit record all I want is your money
Educated rapper you ain’t nothing but a dummy
You try to be chummy or you plays gin rummy
I bet makin love to you must really be crummy
You say it’s customary to give your commentary
I say it’s crap you’re full of strawberries.

Your rap is so weak and your face is so scary
You always find a rap like yours in any cemetery
So do you know you didn’t even pass
All you received was a kick in the ass “

Calling Her a Crab (Roxanne Part 2)

Due to the Roxanne Wars that popped off (including their own produced Real Roxanne) UTFO released Calling her a Crab, this basically retracts all the good things they said about Roxanne in the original song and disses her very heavily and says they never wanted her in the first place LOL.

Overall I dont have a bad thing to say about the album, it’s definitely an early 80s Hip Hop joint, it gives you some of everything; something to break to, something to laugh at, something for the block, something for the women …and again the legendary Roxanne Wars came off the lead single.

You should have this in your collection.

utforealrox

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