Spin - 1/97, p.89
"...From Rick Rubin ghetto blasts to his knockout, jingling Marley Marl resucitation to this year's lounge sexscapades, Todd Smith has kept the L.L. dream alive, with skills...and wondrous self-admiration..."
Entertainment Weekly - 12/20/96, p.76
"One of rap's original B-Boys didn't survive on his charm or waggish vocal chops alone. As this relentlessly engaging hits package proves, he deftly segued from snarling boasts to cuddly come-ons, just as his tracks kept improving....An essential hip-hop collection..." - Rating: A
Personnel includes: LL Cool J, Boyz II Men.
Producers include: Rick Rubin, LL Cool J, Marley Marl, QD III.
Audio Remixer: Tone.
Photographers: Todd Gray; Barron Claiborne; Michel Comte; Albert Watson ; Jesse Frohman; Ricardo Betancourt; Christian Lantry; Glen E. Friedman; Daniel Hastings; Gary Spector; Danny Clinch.
LL Cool J is an unimpeachably important figure in the history of hip-hop. He has weathered all the trends and fashions in the rap world over the last decade. ALL WORLD is a long overdue greatest-hits collection that makes a strong case for LL as one of the most consistent and innovative figures in rap, pre-dating the Death Row crew and eschewing the pimp/gangsta image that has weighed down too many rap albums in the '90s.
The infectious groove of "Rock The Bells" sets the tone, finding LL rocking the mic with an inimitable authority. "I Need Love" changes the pace and shows his emotional range, with lyrics that show a romantic sensitivity uncommon among rappers. "Jingling Baby" and "The Boomin' System" showcase LL doing what he does best, creating a lively party atmosphere with irresistibly funky rhythm tracks. "Mama Said Knock You Out" makes it plain that LL is more than just a party boy, with a fierce, aggressive rap that sounds as fresh as the day it was released. This is an essential document of rap's past and present, and maybe even a hint of its future.