Unlike alot of hiphop heads, I didn’t get the purple tape. I remember getting this album on CD. I opened up the booklet pressed play and stayed in front of the speakers for 5 hours straight listening to the incredible album and listening and reading the credits and listening and listening and listening and… well, you get the picture. Classic shit right here.
Truly classic albums of any genre stand the test of time. But there’s an extra special reverence with which hip-hop fans regard Raekwon the Chef‘s 1995 solo debut, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… Musically and conceptually groundbreaking, OB4CL‘s uncompromising hustler’s sensibility was famously symbolized by a simple packaging detail: its cassette and CD’s purple tinted shell, which announced a product from the streets both elite in class yet undiluted in its aesthetic rawness.
Equally iconic, however, is the album’s striking Daniel Hastings-photographed cover image – a portrait of Raekwon and exuberant partner-in-rhyme Ghostface Killah halo-ed by a haze of blunt smoke set against a fire-engine red curtain adorned with the Wu emblem.
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