The album was written and recorded by the group in 1992. However, following a long dispute with their record company, the album was not released until February 1, 1994. Most versions of the album contain eighteen tracks, with the addition of a remix of "Nappy Heads" on the majority of these versions. Prior to the album's release, "Boof Baf" was released as the album's lead single. Commercially, the single was unsuccessful. The album's highest charting single is "Nappy Heads", peaking at number 49 on the Billboard Hot 100. "Vocab" was released as the album's third and final single. It failed to chart on the Billboard Hot 100.
The album was recorded at the House of Music Studios in West Orange, New Jersey. The Fugees have said that they allowed the producers too much control over the album's content and form.
Although the album did not contain as many lyrics with overtly politically messages as songs from The Score, there were still political intentions. Wyclef Jean describes the meaning of the title of their first album in a 1990 interview on the television program Lorna’s Corner:
“when the cop is messing around with somebody for something that the person didn’t do and they try to set ‘em up, that makes me blunted on reality. When the government is taking money on arms…and that money could be going back to the community it makes me blunted on reality. It’s just awareness of what’s going on…that’s what blunted on reality means…It don’t mean that I smoke weed…cause I’m too paranoid as it is.”
Before the release of their critically acclaimed sophomore album, The Score in 1996, the album sold an estimated 12,000 copies. Since then, the album has sold 130,000 copies in the United States to date.