Thursday, 22 July 2010

In The Cipha

Cipha Sounds recently teamed up with Complex. magazine to compile a list of his personal favourite and the greatest Tunnel Bangers of all time. The Tunnel being the infamous New York club night populated by many a rapper back in the day and scratched up and presented by Funkmaster Flew, Big Kap, Cipha Sounds & Doo Wop amongst many others.

Basically, its a 75-track run-down of some of the best hip-hop club tracks from the 90s. And its EXTREMELY nostalgic to a guy like me who despite being thousands of miles away from even having an opportunity to visit this club night, grew up on all of these specific tracks.
I was born in '86. That makes me 24 years old right now. And even as a 24 year old (read: still young) I feel a little disenfranchised with what hip-hop club music has become. These days hip-hop club music is essentially just the pop tracks in the charts that have emcees guesting on them. It also doesnt help that I live in Leeds, and the closest thing you get here to hearing rap in the clubs is a Black Eyed Peas track. Horrific.

Anyway, with me being 24, I was about 13-16 years old when a lot of the music included on this list was out, and around that time I was learning how to dig and learning/understanding hip-hop music more and more by going back to older eras and just listening to everything. So I know every single song on this list from when I was a young teenager. Strange thing is, for the most part I've not actually heard a lot of these tracks or pulled them out from my vinyl/CD collection since I was a teenager either, so when I stumbled across this list I found it not only a breath of fresh air and an opportunity to listen to great music, but a trip back to what I would call a happier time in hip-hop when tracks and albums rarely pandered to the 8 year old suburban girl, and songs were just made freely with no sales pitch, other than it being great music.

Enjoy this list as I have, and tut and shake your head like an old man that we went from these tunnel bangers to....Drake. Uggggh. Just the name alone makes me want to gag*.

So, here's the link to the article, with Cipha Sounds' commentary for each individual track along with the stream so you can listen to it:

Cipha Sounds' 75 Greatest Tunnel Bangers Article at

The tracklist is in the article one by one.

BUT....keep it on the hush, I've been able to find an actual download someone has compiled with every single one of the 75 tracks included, so you can get them all on your iPod and enjoy the 90s again and again...until its 2040 and you're dead. By the way, I have no idea who compiled this props go to the holy ghost, baby jesus, Paul Dickov, or whoever you want to commend for it.

Here you go:

Cipha Sounds' The 75 Greatest Tunnel Bangers (Various Artists)

*and by that I mean gag HIM, put a sack over his head, tie it at the opening and chuck him into a dirty river.

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