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Peoples' Instinctive Travels & the Paths of Rhythm

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iTunes Review

A seminal debut album that hasn’t aged a second. Bursting with inventiveness, colour and charm, it framed Q-Tip, Phife Dawg, Ali Shaheed Muhammed and Jarobi (who would quit the band in 1991 to attend culinary school) as one of hip-hop’s most important groups. Lyrically, it’s extraordinary—tackling police brutality and high art, STDs and veganism—while freewheeling, giddy creativity radiates off everything. Its most iconic moments (“I Left My Wallet In El Segundo”, “Can I Kick It?”) are its most spare and jazzy, while hip-hop is still yet to pen a love letter that tops “Bonita Applebum.”

Customer Reviews

Hip-Hop Genius

This is one of the least appreciated hip-hop albums of all time. Not to say it isn't considered great, but it is a huge ommision from 'Best Hip-Hop' lists, when I believe it is A Tribe Called Quest's best album, making it one of the best by defult. Seriously, buy this you won't regrete it.

I love this album

I remember back in 92 driving to a university interview (I never got the place, the school was way outta my league) thinking tribe were one of the greatest bands on earth. I knew nothing about music, hip hop, culture or even academics but I knew how to kick it! Peace and love

They were teenagers!

This album is a marvellous testament to fresh talent and inventiveness. There is not a weak moment on it. It is very accomplished for a debut and one from a group of guys so young! and is in no way 'experimental as the review above suggests. Every track is a lesson in beats and samples, simple but always funky and self-assured. It is underrated as an album and it is a pity that the Tribe themselves did not continue in this vein for very long. Incidently, the title of the 6th track is 'PUBIC Enemy' and not 'Public enemy' and it is a cheeky joke at the expense of Chuck D and crew, though surely not one he would mind very much.


Formed: 1988 in Queens, NY

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Without question the most intelligent, artistic rap group during the 1990s, A Tribe Called Quest jump-started and perfected the hip-hop alternative to hardcore and gangsta rap. In essence, they abandoned the macho posturing rap music had been constructed upon, and focused instead on abstract philosophy and message tracks. The "sucka MC" theme had never been completely ignored in hip-hop, but Tribe confronted numerous black issues -- date rape, use of the word nigger, the trials and tribulations of...
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