Talk:It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back/Archive 1

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Archive 1 Archive 2


I'm looking for someone to help me turn this into a GA or even an FA. It definitely deserves it. I got some books, video interviews and miscellaneous other stuff related to the album and its creation and release. Hit me up. Funkyvoltron 15:57, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Release date

The article give two release dates. It should only give the date of the first release. I'd correct it myself, but I don't know the true release date. I checked, but was none the wiser. Tim Ivorson 2008-06-21 22:14, 21 June 2008 (UTC)


All the reviews are from the 90s and 2000s. Can we get some reviews of the album from when it came out? M.Nelson (talk) 17:57, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

The Washington Post review

Transciption using Google News Advanced News Archive Search. The Washington Post (Jenkins, Mark. d.07. July 6, 1988) review of It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988):

As the most politically contentious of contemporary hip-hop outfits, Public Enemy has been compared to the Clash, those punk-rock advocates of a "white riot" brought to us by the same megaconglomerate, CBS, a decade ago. The comparison is an interesting one, and not just because both bands achieved a much higher profile in Britain, where radical style (if not necessarily substance) is more fashionable than it is among this country's hidebound youth. Still, the comparison is more telling if applied not to the bands' outward revolutionary bombast, but to their more self-interested subtexts.

Like the best of the Clash, Public Enemy's new album, which comes with the suitably heroic title "It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back" (Def Jam/CBS BFW 44303), sounds powerful, fresh and galvanizing. Chief mouth Chuck D and his cartoonish sidekick Flavor Flav deliver their raps over a furiously minimal noise-carpet of abrasive cut-up sounds. At its most insistent-as on "Bring the Noise," the speedy 1987 single that's included here-the richly textured rant is as incantatory as Philip Glass and as angry as the Sex Pistols. Despite titles such as "Prophets of Rage" and the frequent invocations of Louis Farrakhan (the band's front men told New Musical Express, an English music weekly, that they accept Farrakhan's anti-Semitic black nationalism unequivocally), Public Enemy is better at turning a phrase-or turning over a phrase, as when they flop the Beastie Boys' hit into "Party for Your Right to Fight"-than writing a coherent platform.

The band's lack of air play is the album's recurrent theme, and the most focused songs are those, such as "Dont Believe the Hype," which directly address its understandably controversial public image. (Also like the Clash, PE is highly sensitized to the media: "Hype" even enlists Village Voice rap critic Harry Allen-identified as a "media assassin"-to deliver the eponymous refrain.) For black nationalists, the Enemy's relationship to white-dominated pop culture is rather ambiguous-and ambivalent.

"She Watch Channel Zero?!" sneers at a black woman (like most rappers, Chuck and Flav see women as the ultimate repository of laziness and stupidity) who watches junk TV. "Read a book or something," Flav commands, "read about yourself, learn your culture." The group's relationship with the tube isn't exactly pure, however. Chuck, who sports an LA Raiders cap on the album's cover, gives "we gotta watch the game" as one reason for that stupid girl to leave the TV alone, and on "Hype," Flav borrows a "silly rabbit" put-down from a Trix commercial.

Aurally, "Nation of Millions" is intoxicating; Hank Shocklee and Carl Ryder's bold production will likely prove among the most distinctive of the year, not just in rap but in any pop genre. For their work to pack the political wallop they crave, however, the members of Public Enemy need to think for themselves, not just attach themselves to the thought of whichever black nationalist is currently drawing big crowds. (Public Enemy joins Run-DMC, Jazzy Jeff and DJ Prince, Stetsasonic, EPMD and other rap and go-go acts at Capital Centre July 23.)
— Mark Jenkins

Dan56 (talk) 09:16, 6 December 2009 (UTC)

What does the title mean?

Is it a quote? It doesn't seem to make much sense -- "millions" isn't particularly large for a nation. So the title effectively means "even a particularly feeble nation could easily stave us off". Maikel (talk) 10:31, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

don't take everything so literally — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:33, 12 November 2011 (UTC)

Tracklist/Sample section merge?

Does there need to be two sections for the tracklist and the sample section? I was going to merge the two together, kind of like I did on the A Future Without a Past... article. Just wanted to know if there'd be a problem with that. WikiGuy86 (talk) 18:08, 17 June 2010 (UTC)

The only problems would be that there are so many samples, it would be kind of messy. But its worth a try. Dan56 (talk) 18:44, 17 June 2010 (UTC)
Though the current tracklist format doesn't look awful, I agree w/ Dan56 on the "messy" factor. I honestly think that the previous one (w/ the samples in a separate section) looked a bit better. In my opinion though, the type of tracklist table used for pages such as It Was Written would be the best for this album (minus the "producers" column, being that the Bomb Squad produced the whole thing, and it'd be unnecessary to have them listed in each and every song as the producer). If I were to change the current tracklist format to either of the previous 2 mentioned, would there be any complaints? --Blastmaster11 (talk) 18:52, 3 July 2010 (UTC)
If everyone thinks it better another way then it's fine with me. I personally prefer the version of the tracklist now. The way it was before felt too excessive (as far as having an entire section just for samples on the page) and it seems like it will be almost the same thing if we use the style from the It Was Written article here. WikiGuy86 (talk) 03:46, 4 July 2010 (UTC)

Section merging

Since there were no citations/references under the Don't Look Back tour and Sample use subheadings and both sections were so small, I decided to merge all info from the two under the new Influence and legacy subheading. WikiGuy86 (talk) 04:49, 2 July 2010 (UTC)

Merged Album singles subheading into infobox as well. All album's singles have their own articles so there's no need for a whole subheading about them on the album's main article. WikiGuy86 (talk) 18:52, 2 July 2010 (UTC)

New lead section

I've written a new lead section for the article and wanted to know if it would be alright if I replaced the current one with it. I didn't include the Peter Shapiro quote from the new version because it felt a little excessive. Let me know what you all think:

It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back is the second studio album by American hip hop group Public Enemy, released April 14, 1988 on Def Jam Recordings. Recording sessions for the album took place at Chung King Studios, Greene Street Recording, and Sabella Studios in New York City.

The album peaked at number forty-two on the Billboard 200 chart. By August of 1989, it was certified platinum in sales by the RIAA, after sales of one million copies in the United States. The album was very well-received by writers and music critics, and appeared on many publications' "best album" lists.

It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back has been regarded by music writers and publications as one of the most significant albums of the 1980s, as well as one of the greatest hip hop albums of all-time. The work has been hailed for its unorthodox production techniques as well as the politically-charged lyricism of lead MC Chuck D. In 2003, the album was ranked number 48 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time, the highest ranking of all the hip hop albums on the list.

WikiGuy86 (talk) 02:20, 8 July 2010 (UTC)

"unorthodox" seems timely as it may have seemed that way back then but hip hop production has changed since then; how about something more descriptive of its production, like dense, sample-layered, "wall of noise"/wall of sound", something about that? Also, certification in the US by the RIAA is based on shipment instead of sales. The Shapiro quote should just be moved to the music section. A lot of GA/FA articles also include info on the artist(s)' style on the album or what they wanted the album to be/sound like. Basically, the lead should summarize the body of the article, and the first two sections take up most of it. Otherwise, all good. Dan56 (talk) 02:32, 8 July 2010 (UTC)

Citation in lead

WP:Lead supports that content in the article body repeated in the lead is less likely to be challenged, as it is cited in the body. I don't understand the persistence in the recent edits to this article in tagging one statement in the lead, just tagging and not really doing much, singling that one statement out. The rest of the lead doesnt require a citation then? While the guideline also says that "Contentious material about living persons must be cited every time, regardless of the level of generality", the statement tagged is not about "living persons"; it refers to an album, a work. And the statement is directly repeated in the body of the article, in which it is properly cited. Dan56 (talk) 22:49, 18 April 2011 (UTC)

My mistake about referencing the living persons element. The point is that "material that is challenged or likely to be challenged... should be cited", per WP:LEADCITE. While WP:LEAD says that material in the lead is less likely to be challenged, it also specifies that there is no exclusion for citations. And, in point of fact, the statement was challenged. I would also say that, generally, statements as to being "one of the best" need an inline quotation, as a challenge is predictable. Should the lead be further cited in this case? Perhaps. All that I'm insisting is that "regarded by music writers and publications as one of the greatest and most influential albums of all-time" should be cited. And that, in the spirit of WP:BURDEN, the verifiability tag shouldn't be just removed. ENeville (talk) 23:27, 18 April 2011 (UTC)
Your "challenge" has no basis; it's cited in the article's body, along with the rest of the lead's content. Are you gonna challenge that too? Tag it up? Dan56 (talk) 23:30, 18 April 2011 (UTC)