On this day, November 9, in hip-hop history…
1993: The third studio album for A Tribe Called Quest was a big one, as the group release Midnight Marauders to the masses, getting huge props and cementing the group in rap history. Today, the classic album turns 20 years old.
Two years after The Low End Theory turned the hip-hop world upside down in 1991, A Tribe Called Quest followed up their sophomore LP with a absolute iconic album, boasting a plethora of hits such as ”Electric Relaxation” ”Oh My God” and smash hit single ”Award Tour.” With its signature jazz inspired tunes and sharp lyrics, this album smooth sound and crisp production completely eases the mind. Phife Dawg spoke to XXL about the pressure of producing Midnight Marauders after the widely popular The Low End Theory. ”At first there was a lot of pressure, because everybody was so gung-ho about the Low End album, and that came out ’91. Obviously, that’s a two-year wait, so there was a lot of pressure like, ‘Can they do it again?” says Phife “ Tip is really hands on, Tip is a genius, so by the time he was finished sequencing the album, I was lookin’ at him sayin, ‘Yo, b, we did it again.’ It was definitely some pressure though, but we rose to the occasion like true champions do.”
Overall, Midnight Marauders is a fantastic body of work that remains beloved by Tribe fans 20 years after its initial release. It easily ranks amongst the finest hip-hop albums of its era and strongly challenges The Low End Theory as Tribe’s best LP.