On this day, Nov. 22, in hip-hop history...

1994: Two years removed from breaking out with his debut, Whut? Thee Album, Redman solidified his status as one of rap's most inventive creators with Dare Iz a Darkside, a 19-track album featuring his signature hyperactive flows and an eccentric brand of East Coast lyricism.

Containing a cohesive collection of woozy, bass-heavy instrumentals, the mostly Redman-produced Dare Iz a Darkside plays out like an unadulterated look into the New Jersey rapper's consciousness. "You are now about to enter the psychotic mind of Redman," Funk Doc says to open the lengthy opus.

Redman's ferocious rapping makes a strong impression right from the beginning, as he attacks "Bobyahed2dis" with an in-your-face level of disrespect. "Go in any hood and puff a blunt with any nigga/As long as we both got, it don't matter who's gun bigger/But I bet you you can't do that, cause the multiplatinums/Can't save your ass on the block, and you're fucked if it ain't pop," he raps, maintaining his rough-around-the-edges persona even as he grows in popularity.

Despite mixed reviews upon its release 23 years ago, Dare Iz a Darkside managed to earn gold certification by January of the next year, and it's now seen as a cult classic. Dare Iz a Darkside isn't necessarily the definitive Redman album, but it is a project that pushed the rising MC along his road to being one of the defining voices of East Coast rap in the 1990s.

Def Jam
Def Jam

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