Album Review: Celph Titled & Buckwild – Nineteen Ninety Now

When this was first announced, I thought, ‘Sure, this might be decent’. I mean a new album of Buckwild beats from the 90′s sounded good on paper, but these things have a habit of failing to deliver more often than not, so I kinda forgot about the whole thing after hearing the initial leak. The link to the advance version arrived in my inbox a couple of days ago, but it wasn’t until I needed something new to rock in the ride on Saturday night that I gave it a shot. As it turns out, this is actually one of the most enjoyable records I’ve listened to all year.

I’m not going to sit here and act like I was ever a big fan of Celph Titled as a rapper. He’s made some dope beats over the years, but something about his cadence just didn’t sound right to me. Yet over these top notch Buck productions, it all makes sense. It’s amazing just how much the right track can enhance the MC’s – even guys like Vinnie Paz (who may have worn out his welcome with a few listeners) sounds refreshed over these vintage beats. Celph proves to be a perfect match here, toning-down his usual exaggerated punchline delivery for something more natural, without sacrificing the wordplay. Ninteen Ninety Now sticks to the classic album blueprint of the era, which is never a bad thing considering how effective it can be in the right hands. You get the sex track, the auto-biographical joint, the all-star posse cut…even some effin’ ragga chanting! They haven’t missed a trick.

The quality that separates this from some kind of hokey Jurrassic 5 style throwback record is the simple fact that it’s not a throwback at all – this is just a great LP based on the tried-and-tested formulas that are often forgotten by the n00b schoolers. I’m at a loss as to why nobody chose to use these beats when Buck first made them though. Maybe he never played them to anyone and just kept them in the stash? Either way, Celph Titled, Buckwild and Mista Sinista make for a good combination in 2010. Another victory for the Conservative Rap Coalition…


Celph Titled & Buckwild - ‘Step Correctly’

Nineteen Ninety Now drops October 26 on No Sleep Recordings.

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33 Comments so far
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totally agree, nineteen ninety now is a great album, long overdue from celph!

Comment by fresh 09.06.10 @

I can’t remember liking any Buckwild beat in many a year, but 90s instrumentals?

I’m intrigued.

Comment by A.S. 09.06.10 @

I love the concept and wouldve loved the outcome had the mc on it been O.C, how dope wouldnt that been? Im still getting this though because of Buckwilds beats, but Celph is so-so at best imo, so a shame about that.

Comment by PAS 09.06.10 @

^^ The outcome would have been an album called Word…Life.

Let’s not retread old ground for the sake of it, now.

Comment by A.S. 09.06.10 @

Dope…Celph always comes tight.

Comment by Johnny Hardcore 09.06.10 @

PAS, you most likely haven’t been following Celph for awhile if you say he is “so-so at best.” Dude murders every song he is featured on. I’m talking about his 2006+ material, not his early stuff. Have you not been listening lately? I’d give him the most improved MC award for sure cause I used to not be able to stand him.

Comment by Penn 09.06.10 @

I mean the beat,and sinista on the cuts is cool..but Celph dont cut it for me,sorry.

Comment by dj blendz 09.06.10 @

damn blendz, you gonna say that without hearing the whole album first? i’m all about giving music a chance, never do i pre-judge it. i’m with penn, i wasn’t a fan of celph’s early stuff but what i’ve heard from him lately & on these leaks has changed me into a fan. the guy definitely knows what he’s doing now. i welcome this release greatly.

Comment by samson 09.06.10 @

@Penn: Youre right I havent given Celph much attention the last 5 years, at least, Im giving him the benefit of a doubt on this one.
The lyrics on this one doesnt exactly wet my appetite though.
Im pretty sure I wont be disappointed buying this anycase, should the lyrics be butt all over, that itself would serve as a nod to the nineties.
When there was a lot of albums released, consisting of not so great rappers over some killer beats!;) ie This album can never lose, how often does that happen?!

Comment by PAS 09.06.10 @

PAS, yeah I feel you, but I’m not sure what kind of lyrics you’re looking for because the punchlines on this song are extremely clever and original and I can’t name another artist currently coming consistent with the punches quite the same as Celph. I mean, really, name me a punchline/battle/bragging based song in the last 9 months? Is there even one worth mentioning? And it ain’t like dude was lazy on this song or using filler lyrics. The reason I’m so gung-ho about it is because I used not to check for this guy. I seriously had my head fucked up when I heard his most recent verses and it totally blew me away. His flow now sounds super on-beat, whereas before it was shaky and his voice isn’t annoying me like it used to when he screamed and sounded like an idiot. A one time hater turned into a superfan of this guy’s new works couldn’t be a better salesman. Listen to the lyrics again and name another current song with the brag style doing it BETTER than this. Bar for bar, with the same finesse and sense of humor.

Comment by Penn 09.07.10 @

@ samson

i was never really much a Celph fan so i might be bias in that regard..i’ll check out the album though

Comment by dj blendz 09.07.10 @

man OCT 26th? its obviously finished this needs to drop already !! Im gonna cop this

Comment by D.Baskett 09.07.10 @

He sounds kinda like R.A. The Rugged Man on this… anyone else hearing it? Especially on that Beyonce line.

Comment by Requiem 09.07.10 @

It’s okay but it hasn’t got me jizzin’.

Comment by vollsticks 09.07.10 @

Celph Titled is BUTT……

Comment by 718 Live 09.07.10 @

I wanted to check for it simply because its an entire album produced by Buckwild, but was skeptical cause I’ve never been a big fan of Celph Titled. Based on this review I think I will give it a shot.. Too bad I’d probably have to order online. Fuckin Fat Beats…

Comment by LEX 09.07.10 @

I was already looking forward to this but now even more after reading the write up here.

Comment by Shaun D. aka Wicked 09.07.10 @

I’ll have to say, Celph has got some of the best punchlines in rap music today, if you don’t realize that you’re sleeping, as far as his voice goes, its so-so, sometimes i dig it, sometimes i don’t, you have to be in the right mood and mindset to listen to dude, it seems like I usually only hear him on posse cuts like with AOTP or with his other cohorts, I’ll have to check for this one.

Comment by gstatty 09.07.10 @

LOL @ someone saying Celph is “BUTT”.. Obviously another person sleeping on Celph or judging him purely from early records of his. He has improved so much that he moved into my top 10 favorite emcees. His wordplay, punchlines, wittyness, character, multi-syllables, etc are all out of this world. Anyone who hates on this dude in 2010 just has another agenda against the guy. Seriously I can’t name a rapper doing the braggadocio style better than Celph Titled. Half the emcees that get praised for “ripping it” are nowhere near Celph’s level, yet heads still sleep on Celph or don’t mention him. I think a lot of heads are superficial and they don’t actually LISTEN or they hate on the guy cause he’s not black and he came up during the backpack scene. People are snobs. It’s about the MUSIC. The beats on this album are a no brainer, but I want to hear more for sure. If the lyrics on “Step Correctly” didn’t impress you, please list to me some songs with clever rhymes that DO impress you so I can figure out what’s wrong with your head.

Comment by iLLaG 09.07.10 @

The track Robbie posted is nice, definitly gonna check out the album!

This will sound mad ignorant, but I cant listen to the Q Unique record, his voice sucks and is too annoying. I guess it’s really “mostly the voice”…shame it totally backfires on Q Unique >_>

Comment by ... 09.08.10 @

I have very little doubt whenever I see Celph’s name on anything … one of those gifted dudes who was born with “it” (THE FUNK!) … He has been telling me about this album for a few years now, so I am very much looking forward to it … He said it would be right up my alley … I’m sure Buck, and many great producers save beats like this thru the years for special MC’s and projects like this one …

Comment by ACthePD 09.13.10 @

I’ve never been a big Celph fan because of the voice. It sounds fake and gets old. I respect the technique here though. Small doses, I can hear this but a whole album of this guy would get on my nerves. I’ll buy a track or three.

Comment by A'Peks 09.13.10 @

Black Milk >>>>

Comment by Thomas 09.16.10 @

wow, that whole album is sick and achieves the purpose to bring back that old 90s flavor. good match.

even though, i would love to hear some of that old dusty buckwild gems a little while ago on A.G.&O.C.s “OASIS” or on that D.I.T.C. “Worldwide” album.

Comment by Benson 09.21.10 @

The album snippets are out!
The beats are incredible. These are no throwaway beats. Killer drums and filtered 950 bass all day.
Nice chopped melodies and cuts.

Comment by The Recluse 10.12.10 @

when u said u never liked celph titled as a rapper i stoped reading….

Comment by adam 10.25.10 @

How on Earth did these beats manage to slip thru the crack in the mid 90s!?!? The production on this album is crazy! And as for Celph he does what he alway does and absolutely obliterates every track!! Celph is a beast and mos def a top ten Emcee in the game. Sorry Black Milk this is the real AOTY!!!

Comment by URgrlsUPSman 10.27.10 @

Just got this album a few days ago..wow..album of the year..if you were listening to rap in the early 90′s and you like punchlines get this album.

Comment by Johnny Hardcore 11.04.10 @

A better battle/bragging/F the mainstream/REWIND THAT ISH emcee? Really….DIABOLIC liar and a thief? heard it? he’s ill as ish…Elzhi, Crooked I, Louis Logic, One Be Lo, RA the Rugged Man, Possessed (from Rhyme Asylum), Percee-P, Apathy, Em (96-02/03), Nasir Jones, KOOL G RAP, Masta Ace, PHAROAHE MONCH, Copywrite (better with the battle rhymes/multis/flow more times than not that Celph), Chino XL, Reef The Lost Cauze…Those are some of my personal favs emcees better than Celph (whose solid, but nothing special). He used to do tracks with Apathy and Louis Logic and got murdered. To be fair I haven’t heard him AS MUCH post 06.

But Diabolic Liar and a Thief came out APRIL 6 and the rhymes are killing Celph. Beats by Engineer are decent to solid, nowhere near BUCKWILD for sure (although bolic is going to try and get some beats from him, primo to name a few for his next album)

Comment by Jake 11.05.10 @

lol@this Jake dude.

“Let’s make a list of everyone I listen to, that way, I’ll look more knowledgeable.”

Louis Logic hasn’t made good music since Sin-A-Matic, and Apathy could never have carried the ‘Godz as far without Celph. He’s not good enough. Every other name you drop is irrelevant, and your comparisons, nonsensical.

Comment by Aitch 12.06.10 @

Wow, been waiting on something like this for a while. Hip hop needs to return to this state. As a producer who’s beats are inspired primarily on the fuel of the early nineties, I feel good about what hip hop can become in the very near future.

Comment by FUNKSMUGGLA 12.13.10 @

pls can any1 tell “Celph Titled Buckwild – Nineteen Ninety Now” get free download.

Comment by Jmz 04.09.11 @

JEDI MIND,AOTP,DEMI GODZ, ILL BILL, CHINO XL, KILLAH PRIEST THESE ARE SOME AND I KNOW IVE MISSED ALOT OBV… BUT THE ALL SPIT WICKED SHIT AND ITS NOT ABOUT WHOS THE BEST ITS COMES DOWN TO WHAT U LIKE TO BOB UR HEAD TO LOL AND CELPH IS THE MAIN MAN!!! LYRICALLY MIGHT NOT BE AS GOOD AS OTHERS BUT I PUT HIM AT THE TOP OF THE PEDISTAL ANYBODY THAT DISSAGREE’S DOSN’T KNOW SHIT BOUT RAP!! ITS HARD TO CRITIQUE RAPPERS SINCE IM CANADIAN CAUSE WE DONT GOT MUCH BUT THE ONES WE DO HAVE REALLY STAND OUT BUT DONT WORRY IM REPPIN IT ALL UP HERE SO ITS JUST A MATTER OF TIME BEFOR MORE PPL COME TO THERE SENSES HAHAHA PCE

Comment by freshD 05.17.11 @



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