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Still Standing

Goodie Mob

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Album Review

Goodie Mob's debut album was a production masterpiece that ranks as perhaps the most Southern-sounding Southern rap album ever recorded; similarly, lead rapper Cee-Lo is one of the most Southern MCs on record, with a raspy, nasal, rural-sounding drawl that's utterly distinctive. The follow-up album, Still Standing, is mostly more of the same great stuff, with producers Organized Noize refining the soulful, organic blueprint laid out on Soul Food. There are some more up-tempo percussion tracks here, with a few detours into more typical Southern bounce tracks; it's mildly disappointing to hear Goodie Mob following trends instead of setting them, but they're well-executed all the same. When the results are more imaginative, as on the hit single "They Don't Dance No Mo'" and "Ghetto-ology," it's a terrific expansion of the group's sound; so is the heavy, guitar-driven rocker "Just About Over." The hardcore themes that occasionally popped up on Soul Food are a smaller presence on Still Standing; even so, while the group may be progressive in sentiment, they still aren't gentle in language. And their trademark social and spiritual awareness is very much in evidence. "The Experience" is a nimble meditation on the word "nigga"; "Black Ice," "Fly Away," and "Inshallah" have the deep gospel feel that makes Goodie Mob so unique; "Beautiful Skin" professes deep respect for women who respect themselves; and "Gutta Butta" and "Greeny Green" are reflections on neighborhood pride (by way of not littering) and materialism, respectively. Cee-Lo is even more of a breakout individual presence on Still Standing, and his unique style can sometimes overshadow his bandmates; plus, a few tracks just aren't that engaging. But overall, Still Standing is an excellent follow-up to a major artistic statement.

Biography

Formed: 1991 in Atlanta, GA

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

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

Along with OutKast, with whom they were closely associated, Goodie Mob was among the first Southern rap acts to attain nationwide recognition, particularly with their classic debut, Soul Food (1995). The group unraveled after only its third album, World Party (1999), when Cee-Lo broke away for a solo career, and overall their recognition was much more critical than commercial. All the same, Goodie Mob's reputation as a pioneering Southern rap act remains firmly in place, and that reputation was considerably...
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Still Standing, Goodie Mob
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