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NahRight x UpNorthTrips Present: Memory Lane, a Digital Museum of Mobb Deep’s The Infamous

Friday, April 24th, 2015


Words by Paul Meara (@PaulMeara) with additional reporting from Evan Auerbach (@UpNorthTrips)

Mobb Deep were legends far before anything they created touched wax. The two met each other in high school when a young Prodigy witnessed his eventual rap partner fighting a kid twice his size in the school yard. Outmatched by size and the fact that his nemesis had a knife, Havoc dipped every swing and eventually won the bout. There was no such thing as Mobb Deep back then. Poetical Prophets didn’t even exist. It was just Albert and Kejuan. At the time, P was perusing a solo career but that quickly changed after meeting Hav. All connections he made and access to free studio time disolved once potential labels found out that any ink-to-contract came with also signing a then unknown lyrical accomplice.

The duo would eventually land on 4th & Broadway in 1992 and release their debut Juvenile Hell album a year later. The project was widely regarded as a flop and Mobb Deep was dropped from their first label later that year. Only 17 at the time, each have admitted in retrospect that their immaturity and work ethic weren’t all the way there when recording their first LP. Luckily, they would have a second chance. That re-up would be The Infamous.

The Mobb’s sophomore effort developed in a manner similar to their own childhood. It was cultivated in the cramped confides of Hav’s childhood home in building 41-15 and later brought to the studio for further development. Q-Tip, who originally helped Mobb Deep obtain their first deal with the Def Jam offshoot label, would become one of The Infamous’ masterminds. Every scratchy sample spawned by Havoc’s MPC 16 and every cold-blooded verse from Prodigy’s barbarous delivery was amplified by the A Tribe Called Quest producer. He, along with the Mobb, put together one of the darkest albums the genre has ever seen and arguably the best sonic representation of the place they called home.

The Infamous was released on April 25, 1995 but it was a body of work that represented the short lived triumphs and struggles Mobb Deep had faced since officially joining forces in 1991. It was the cultivation of learned lessons both musically and in life during the four years previous. The album represented the transition from a written off, immature duo to the makings of what would become one of hip-hop music’s preeminent groups. NahRight recently spoke to numerous key players involved in crafting The Infamous, including P and Hav. To best understand the album, where it came from and the people who made it what it was, we also gathered photos and key audio to accompany stories about its formation and lasting impact. Or a trip down “Memory Lane,” as Nas would put it.

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Big Noyd, Large Pro & Kool G Rap – Naturally Born (Cookin Soul Remix)

Friday, November 28th, 2014


The fellas from Cookin Soul give Noyd, Large Professor and Kool G. Rap’s “Naturally Born” an 80’s inspired rework, adding a drum heavy beat that is far more sinister than the original, soulful Ayatollah track.

This will appear on Remineded, an upcoming compilation of remixes from Coalmine Records. Hit the jump for the full tracklist and pre-order link.

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DJ Jean Maron ft. Mobb Deep & Big Noyd – Itinerary

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

DJ Jean Maron just released his new album True School and it’s got features from KRS-One, Tony Touch, M.O.P., Kool G Rap, Skyzoo and several others. Here’s “Itinerary” with Mobb Deep and Big Noyd.

Listen below and cop the LP on iTunes.

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Big Noyd, Ali Vegas & Nature – Southside

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Deep Concepts Media brings together Big Noyd, Nature and Ali Vegas for a new cut that will appear on the upcoming Opportunity Knocks Vol. 2 mixtape. Also be on the look out for The Masterpiece, a new project from Ali, DCM and Alpha Beta Paper set to drop in October.

Previously: Ali Vegas – The Book of Ali (Mixtape) | Nature – Rock Like This

Big Noyd, Large Professor & Kool G Rap – Naturally Born

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

Noyd, Large Pro and G Rap keep it so Q-Borough over a beat by Ayatollah, off the upcoming Unearthed compilation from Coalmine Records. Scratches by Dutchmaster.

Related: Kool G Rap – The Unkut Interview, Part 1 | Part 2

Previously: Wu-Tang Clan & Kool G Rap – Rivers Of Blood | Rah Digga ft. Fashawn & Reks – Never Back Down

Metta World Peace ft. The Game, Big Noyd, Big Kap, Deacon & Bengi (Devin Ebanks) – Represented (Remix)

Friday, December 21st, 2012

Uh oh. Not only does Ron Ron have a remix for “Represented”, he brought fucking Devin Ebanks with him.

Previously: Metta World Peace – Represented (Video)

Big Noyd – New York Lights (prod. by DJ Skizz)

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

NOYD-1320 Final Layout

This album drops on February 2nd.

Big Noyd – New York Lights (prod. by DJ Skizz)

Previously: Big Noyd – Pokerface

Big Noyd – Pokerface

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010

NOYD-1320 Final Layout

N-O-Y-D is releasing Queens Chronicle on February 2nd.

Big Noyd – Pokerface