Onyx All We Got Iz Us
- Released: October 24, 1995
- Originally Released: 1995
- Label: Fontana Def Jam
Q - 1/96, p.1363 Stars - Good - "...The lyrics are quickfire and the sound is dense..."
Vibe - p.74"Sonsee brings the ruckus, rounding out a surprisingly cohesive work that defies the gimmicks of their head-banging debut."
Vibe - 9/95, p.198"...the s**t is hardcore. It's made for 'live niggas' who hate the smooth punk funk....Senator Dole will have a field day with this one. It's made by thugs for thugs...spits the real poison as seen on the streets. It's intended for immature audiences, so they'll wise up and realize that all we do have is one another..."
NME (Magazine) - 10/21/95, p.527 (out of 10) - "...although there's nothing to rock the Wu's place at the top of the NY tree, Onyx sound convincingly with it. They still paint pictures of NY that turn it into a warscape, but they've deliberated their moves so as not to re-emerge as the latest rap washouts..."
- $0.99 on iTunes1.Life or Death (Skit)
- $1.29 on iTunes2.Last Dayz
- $0.99 on iTunes3.All We Got Iz Us (Evil Streets)
- $0.99 on iTunes4.Purse Snatchaz
- $0.99 on iTunes5.Shout
- $0.99 on iTunes6.I Murder U (Skit)
- $0.99 on iTunes7.Betta off Dead
- $0.99 on iTunes8.Live Niguz
- $0.99 on iTunes9.Punkmotherfukaz
- $0.99 on iTunes10.Most Def
- $0.99 on iTunes11.Act up (Skit)
- $0.99 on iTunes12.Getto Mentalitee
- $0.99 on iTunes13.2 Wrongs
- $0.99 on iTunes14.Maintain (Skit)
- $0.99 on iTunes15.Walk in New York
Song previews provided courtesy of iTunes
Onyx: Sonee Seeza (vocals, scratches); Fredro Starr a/k/a Never, Sticky Fingaz (vocals).
Additional personnel: Greg Valentine, All City, P.I. (vocals); Rich Keller (bass); Flamboyant (scratches).
Producers: Fredro Starr, Sticky Fingaz, Sonee Seeza (tracks 1, 4, 7, 9); Fredro Starr (tracks 2-3, 5-6, 8, 10, 12, 14-15); Sticky Fingaz (tracks 11, 13).
Engineers: Don Elliot (tracks 1-6, 8, 10, 12, 14-15); Rich Keller (tracks 7, 9, 11, 13).
Recorded at LGK Studios, Leonia, New Jersey.
All songs written or co-written by members of Onyx. Samples include "Love Lips" (as performed by Bob James and Earl Klugh), "Love Is My Life" (as performed by Jimmy McGriff) and "Wherever You Are" (as performed by Isaac Hayes). Interpolations include "Trying To Get The Feeling Again" (D. Pomeranz).
ALL WE GOT IZ US is the sophomore effort from Onyx, the group responsible for introducing the world to a horror-filled rap music. Their screaming hardcore style transformed these often misunderstood, gun-slinging outlaws into the most unlikely hip-hop crossover of the '90s. Now rolling three deep (Big D.S. having fallen by the wayside), Onyx continue to vent large doses of anger towards society, with a do-or-die attitude that jumps off the album's title.
Obviously not suffering from the dreaded sophomore jinx, ALL WE GOT IZ US is as strong--if not stronger--than its predecessor, BACDAFUCUP. The songs are comparable ("Shout" being the obvious 1995 equivalent of "Slam"), but the production, provided mostly by Fredro Starr (now known as Never), is far more complex than the average boom-bap laid over a sample. "Betta Off Dead" not only contains angry lyrics that manage to stay on beat, but also mixes in a dragged scream of "Onyx" and a whistle as part of the background sound effects. Each song or skit mysteriously segues into the next without a clear distinction, adding fire to the already lit flame. A gun-shot at the end of Sticky Fingaz' opening "Life Or Death" skit sets off the album's most haunting cut, "Last Dayz," which describes the disintegrating world as Onyx see it from the streets of South Suicide (Jamaica), Queens.
Some say their messages promote violence, but Onyx, who speak on behalf of the U.S.G. (United States Ghetto), are on an entirely different level than the gangsta/murder-everybody rap groups they get compared to. A close listen to ALL WE GOT IZ US proves it.
Recording information: LGK Studios, Leonia, NJ.
The second offering from Queens' Onyx is another fix of dark and psychotic microphone marauding. Unlike their debut album Bacdafucup, the trio's 1995 sophomore project contains no MTV-friendly cuts like "Slam." Rather, All We Got Iz Us is strictly the dark side, espousing basically one emotion: rage. This is a primal album of raucous wailing over sparse, rumbling beats. It is the sound of what slithers under the streets of New York. Sticky Fingaz asserts himself as the lyricist of the crew, sounding off like a powder keg ready to blow while Fredro Starr provides the solid but simplistic beats. Onyx cares little about solutions to the problems that have riled them up, they're simply reacting to them by letting out a guttural roar of anger and violence. Perhaps the forerunners of hardcore artists such as DMX, they in many ways authored the grimy, lowdown flow. In spite of their talents, without the benefit of airplay All We Got Iz Us fizzled. Regardless, Onyx maintained their "right to remain violent" and for what they do, they do it very well on this album. The standout cuts include: "Last Dayz," "Live Niguz," "Walk In New York," "Shout," and "Geto Mentalitee," featuring All City. ~ M.F. DiBella