|Studio album by N.W.A|
|Released||May 28, 1991|
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Genre||Gangsta rap, G-funk, hardcore hip hop, West Coast hip hop|
|Producer||Eazy-E (exec.), Dr. Dre, DJ Yella|
Niggaz4Life (also known as EFIL4ZAGGIN) is the second and final studio album by gangsta rap group N.W.A, released in 1991. It was their final album, as the group disbanded later the same year after the departure of Dr. Dre and songwriter The D.O.C. for Death Row Records; the album features only four members of the original line-up, as Ice Cube had already left the group in 1989. Niggaz4Life debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200, but in its second week reached No. 1.
In 1992, several months after the release of the album, N.W.A released a video entitled Niggaz4Life: The Only Home Video, which chronicled the making of the album and its three music videos, "Alwayz into Somethin'", "Appetite for Destruction" and "Approach to Danger".
In 2002, the CD was re-released in two formats. Both had the EP 100 Miles and Runnin' appended to the end of the original track listing, but one was available with a DVD copy of Niggaz4Life: The Only Home Video.
On the cover the title appears as a mirror-image of the text "NIGGAZ4LIFE". The name of the new album had been revealed in "Kamurshol" from N.W.A's previous release 100 Miles and Runnin', but only by playing a vinyl copy backwards could the otherwise unintelligible sound be deciphered as "niggaz for life". Since the album contained the word "Nigga" in it, on some publications it had to be edited out as Straight Out of Compton 2.
While "Niggaz 4 Life" was the original title, it was likely changed on the cover to its reversed form due to political (and financial) considerations. The corruption of the word "nigga" as used in the album title was perhaps influenced by censorship measures in the US music industry introduced at the time. Controversy surrounding the content of heavy metal and hip hop music in general, in particular N.W.A, had been directed by Tipper Gore's Parents Music Resource Center, which had resulted in the adoption of self-censorship measures in the US music industry, including the Parental Advisory sticker. Straight Outta Compton, N.W.A's previous full-length, which also contained the song "Parental Discretion Iz Advised", was one of the first to be branded. By obfuscating the offensive word, the group were able to leverage a small measure of artistic freedom. At the time of release, the album was removed from music stores in the United Kingdom.
In 1991, Island Records UK (who licensed the record outside the USA) were charged under section two of the UK's obscene publication act for wilfully releasing Efil4Zaggin in the UK. Given the chance to withdraw the album by the police and avoid prosecution the board of directors took the decision to defend N.W.A's right of free speech. Island president Marc Marot was personally threatened with prosecution under section 1 of the act as the 'controlling mind' behind Island Records at the time of the case. Island engaged Geoffrey Robinson QC as a barrister and were rewarded with a famous win at Redbridge magistrate court on 7 November 1991, with all charges dismissed and costs awarded against the Crown prosecution services. This was to be the last obscenity trial levelled against the UK music industry.
In comparison to its predecessor, the album was also heavier on misogyny, for which it became notorious. The album's final nine songs were laden with more sexist profanity and references to various sexual acts, provoking the ire of the PMRC, liberal and conservative politicians, and civil rights activist C. Delores Tucker.
|The Rolling Stone Album Guide|||
The album debuted number 2 on the US Billboard Top LPs chart. The second week it climbed up to number 1, making it the first hardcore rap album ever to so. As of 1991 the album has sold 2.1 million copies in the US alone.
|1.||"Prelude"||MC Ren||MC Ren, Above The Law||2:27|
|2.||"Real Niggaz Don't Die"||MC Ren, The D.O.C.||MC Ren, Dr. Dre, Eazy-E||3:40|
|3.||"Niggaz 4 Life"||MC Ren, The D.O.C.||MC Ren, Dr. Dre, Eazy-E||4:59|
|5.||"Appetite for Destruction"||MC Ren, The D.O.C., Kokane||MC Ren, Dr. Dre, Eazy-E||3:22|
|6.||"Don't Drink That Wine" (interlude)||1:07|
|7.||"Alwayz into Somethin'"||MC Ren, The D.O.C.||MC Ren, Dr. Dre||4:29|
|8.||"Message to B.A." (interlude)||0:48|
|9.||"Real Niggaz"||MC Ren||MC Ren, Dr. Dre, Eazy-E||4:27|
|10.||"To Kill a Hooker" (interlude)||0:50|
|11.||"One Less Bitch"||MC Ren, The D.O.C.||MC Ren, Dr. Dre||4:47|
|12.||"Findum, Fuckum & Flee"||MC Ren||MC Ren, Dr. Dre, Eazy-E||3:55|
|13.||"Automobile"||MC Ren, Eazy-E||Eazy-E, Dr. Dre||3:15|
|14.||"She Swallowed It"||MC Ren||MC Ren||4:13|
|15.||"I'd Rather Fuck You"||MC Ren, Eazy-E||Eazy-E||3:57|
|16.||"Approach to Danger"||MC Ren, The D.O.C||MC Ren, Dr. Dre, Eazy-E||2:45|
|18.||"The Dayz of Wayback"||MC Ren, The D.O.C.||MC Ren, Dr. Dre||4:15|
|2002 bonus tracks: 100 Miles and Runnin'|
|19.||"100 Miles and Runnin'"||4:32|
|20.||"Just Don't Bite It"||5:28|
|21.||"Sa Prize (Part 2)"||5:59|
|MC Ren||performs on 11 tracks|
|Dr. Dre||performs on 9 tracks|
|Eazy-E||performs on 9 tracks|
|DJ Yella||performs on 1 track|
|Above The Law||performs on 1 track|
|Admiral Dancehall||performs on 2 tracks|
|Warren G||Uncredited vocals on "1-900-2-Compton"|
|Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums||2|
|1991||"Appetite for Destruction"||45||2|
|"Alwayz into Somethin'"||37||1|
Spellbound by Paula Abdul
|Billboard 200 number-one album
June 22–28, 1991
Slave to the Grind by Skid Row