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Notorious OST - Review

Notorious OST

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3.5 out of 5

IS IT me being churlish, or is it ironic that the best song on the Notorious soundtrack is one that doesn’t come from the Notorious B.I.G himself? That honour belongs to Jay-Z and Santogold’s Brooklyn Go Hard, a thumping hip hop anthem that really deserves to see the light of day as a single.

Elsewhere, as expected, the soundtrack serves as a tribute to the memory and music of Notorious B.I.G, the hip-hop ‘legend’ who was gunned down in the prime of his career by an unknown drive-by assailant. Known to his family as Christopher Wallace, to his friends as Biggie, and to his fans around the world as a legend, this Brooklyn rapper is widely credited as changing music forever.

And now the epic tale of this one of a kind MC has been brought to the big screen thanks to Biggie’s own mother and best friend and producer Puffy Daddy.

Hence, the Notorious soundtrack is an ideal companion piece to the movie, telling the story of the late B.I.G. and showcasing the way he would – through rhymes and beats – chronicle his life and opinions.

Its filled with Biggie’s best known tracks, like Juicy and Hypnotize, plus new songs by some of hip hop’s biggest names, and never-before-released demos from the rapper’s earliest days.

Hip hop fans probably won’t want to be without it, but there is a sense that Biggie’s music also heralded the beginning of the end for hip hop as a fun genre. His career was marked by rivalry and hardship, and included the now legendary East Coast/West Coast feud between himself and Tupac. His lyrics, like his life, were filled with references to dealing, the violence of the street and hip hop scene, and the women he loved and left.

But unlike acts such as Jurassic Park, it was heavy, heavy shit that Biggie pedalled and although his demise is seen as a tragedy, it could also be argued that it was the end product of a mis-spent life. His music undoubtedly inspired and shaped the genre it represents, but while his legend remains intact, his music maybe isn’t as consistently notable as many would have us believe.

We’re still digging that Jay-Z tune though!

Read our review of Notorious

Download picks: Brooklyn Go Hard, What’s The Beef?, Juicy, Notorious B.I.G., One More Chance (Stay With Me remix), The Notorious Theme (Danny Elfman)

Track listing:

  1. Notorious Thugs (featuring Bone Thugs-N-Harmony)
  2. Hypnotize
  3. Notorious
  4. Juicy
  5. Party & Bullshit
  6. Warning
  7. One More Chance remix (featuring Faith Evans)
  8. Brooklyn Go Hard (Jay-Z featuring Santogold)
  9. Letter to B.I.G. (Jadakiss featuring Faith Evans)
  10. Kick in the Door
  11. What’s Beef
  12. World Is Filled
  13. One More Chance (featuring CJ)
  14. The Notorious Theme (composed by Danny Elfman)
  15. Microphone Murderer (previously unreleased demo)
  16. Guaranteed Raw (previously unreleased demo)
  17. Love No Ho (previously unreleased demo)