Review: The Lady of Rage – Necessary Roughness

Lady of Rage’s Necessary Roughness album is a classic West Coast rap album that is an overlooked masterpiece. The album has an East Coast hip hop feel and vibe. Any fans of hip hop/rap will not want to miss out on purchasing this album! This is album is a must have!

The classic Hip Hop/Rap album, Necessary Roughness, was very underrated and overlooked. The album was a victim of bad timing being released on a declining label. Death Row was suffering from the loss of 2Pac and Suge Knight being incarcerated along with several other issues at the label. Not enough promotion went toward promoting this album to what could have been a mega success. Instead the album was a flop in terms of sales. That would have helped album sales.

The Necessary Roughness album was a victim of bad timing. If the album was released in 1994, it would sold a lot better than it did in 1997. The song Afro Puffs should have been put on there as a bonus track. Most of the production was done by Easy Mo Bee and DJ Premiere. Lady of Rage was smart to leave Death Row in 1998. There was no looking back for her.

The standout tracks were Sho Shot, Get Wit Da Wickedness, Get Wit Da Wickedness (Remix), Necessary Roughness, Big Bad Lady (feat. 2pac), Raw Deal, Some Shit, Microphone Phon Cok, Super Supreme, Confessions, Rough, Rugged, and Raw (feat. Snoop Dogg, Kurupt, and Daz), No Shorts, and Breakdown.

The Lady of Rage breaks Necessary Roughness down lyrically with her body to rock the party. She breaks suckers down to dust. Which she must do. That is what she does on this song. This is how she starts off the beginning of her album.

The Lady of Rage is a lyrical murderer and a microphone bone crusher. She’s going to kill the mic and wear out any MC that try’s to compete with her. Rage rocks a microphone like she was a native New Yorker. She strikes HARD like Ben Frank’s lightning rod leaving suckers charred. Burnt to a crisp. Wicked like a sadistic. She gets sick with her shit. She gets rough and ruggeder.

So check the vocalist. It will be a “Black Moon” when Rage Enta Da Stage. The Lady of Rage turns from Robin to Rage when she grabs the microphone. You can’t front on this big body Southerner. She gets down to the roots like Haiti on the daily. Don’t let her get heated or you just might get stretched out like Sealy Posturepedic.

You don’t wanna Clash with this Titan whether it comes to freestyling or writing due to the way she be breakin off mics, man. Rage rock from Osaka down to the Boondocks. Pop goes the rhyme on you weasels! Once again Rage is in effect! It’s necessary roughness when she busts. Fluttering from the uttering of the vocab when spoken.

Get With Da Wickedness (Flow Like That) was one of the singles off Necessary Roughness along with Sho Shot. The whole song pays homage to RUN DMC and East Coast hip hop/rap. 80s East Coast hip hop/rap meets 90s rap. Rage’s rhymes match and are perfect for any rap song especially this one. The song is about how Rage is the baddest lyricist around.

Samples used are Run DMC – It’s Like That, The Fat Boys – The Fat Boys Are Back, and Anita Baker – Mystery. Get With Da Wickedness (Flow Like That) notably samples Run DMC – It’s Like That though.

From the end to the intro meaning the beginning, Rage got the microphone. Rage reminds us that she is that lyrical flow blower breaking them down to the least common denominator. Rage be that chick with the hits and lyrics. She is definitely ripping microphones. So come get with da wickedness!

Now it’s like bang to the boogie. She’s one tough cookie. Let me break it down to the slab. Silly rabbit, you can’t get with da wickedness. Why? That is for her to explain to you.

Her lyrics in Verse 2 have super def flows. Let me break it down to the slab. Read these lyrics.:

Make em fall a victim to my def flow
Lyrical murderer, that’s why I’m on Death Row
Lethal injection couldn’t, fade me
So, Suge and Dr. Dre scooped me up and paid me
Now I’m, hah, rockin ruff and stuff with my Afro Puffs
Hah, blowin em away like the Big Bad Wolf-a
Huffin, puffin, blowin, no bluffin
When it comes to the Rage I ain’t nothin nice (uhh!)
on stage or mics, lights, camera
Even Jeru calls me the Damaja!

Now you know that The Lady Of Rage is good if Jeru calls her the Damaja! That is lyrically how good she is on the microphone.

Rage blows up like spontaneous combustion on Sho Shot. The Lady of Rage still remain the undisputed. Still hit MC’s like Hadouken. Sho Shot was one of the singles off Necessary Roughness along with Get With Da Wickedness (Flow Like That). The song was released as a promo single in 1997 to radio stations to promote her album.

She begins her song with the wicked ass flow. Something for you wack MC’s to think about. You better be on point. You better be strapped and buckled down because Rage will wreck you lyrically. It’s that Sho Shot shit she releases. MC’s from the West and the East get a motherfuckin piece. Cause it ain’t where ya from it’s where’s ya gat. The lyrical attack is where her ammo is at.

Now they call me Rage cause I rush and come down like a hammer
Live rhythm get driven by vocal vehicular grammar
Untouched, the walls come crumbling down
You get clutched, in my clutch is fifty feet from the ground

Notice on Verse 2 how The Lady of Rage explains that she isn’t into getting involved with rap feuds. She wasn’t going to get involved with that East Coast Vs. West Coast rap feud. She wasn’t about all that. That wasn’t her style. Read her lyrics to have a better understanding from where she stood in the East Coast Vs. West Coast rap feud below.

Cities of war fled the valley, so all of Cali sink
I come stompin like Snoop, hit the N-Y next
I ain’t puffin up that shit between the East and the West
I use my, hip-hop precision, perfectly put to use it’s
Metaphoric phrases, spittin like deuce deuces
Continuous and strenuous, crafty and shady
Brothers notice me like Jodeci, now Forever They Lady
I puts it to ya like this, you can despite me, dislike me
I makes money like Spike Lee
You either wanna be me or be just like me
I’m nasty, nice-ty, no sheisty
Ahh, so cold I’m icy, hah, so throw them dice G

The Lady of Rage and Snoop Dogg explain what the definition of ‘rage’ means on the song Rough, Rugged, and Raw. Now some hip hop heads will have different opinions on how they view this song. Some will think this song is wack while others will think this is phat. This is possibly the only wack song off this album. The beats are watered down but that does not stop either Rage, Snoop, or Daz from making Rough, Rugged, and Raw into a dope song. Real shit from real MC’s.

Snoop Dogg explains what the definition of ‘rage’ means at the very beginning of the song.

Rage… what does that word mean, Rage?
Out-Rage-ous, vindictive… conspicuous
All about it, got to have it
The big bo-ty girl

Rage. What does that word mean? Rage means to be vindictive or conspicuous. It’s Out-Rage-ous! All about it. Got to have it. You don’t know what you in store for! Rough, rugged, and raw! Hardcore!

Dat Nigga Daz kick shit off so tight. He kicks real shit in his rhymes when he recites. The poetry is lethal as Moe Brown. He’s got you hoppin with a new sound. Dat Nigga Daz showin up to put it down. MC’s come around and kick the shit that’s real. B-boys and MC’s, what’s happenin? You better watch out cause nuthin could save ya. Daz blasts us down with the hypnotical sound. He keeps it underground with a real sound.

Now check this! The key in the game is to be in the game. It’s all about the fortune. Motherfuck the game. Live on stage, it’s the Lady of Rage. She don’t follow no fads. The Lady of Rage is bad. Bad down to the marrow. Pure raw, rough, rugged, and hardcore. Robin’s on the soar. The deadliest to take flight. The bomb rhyme condor. She is a rhyme conniseur in her castle. You don’t want no hastle. you don’t wanna battle. Skeedaddle.

Confessions is where Rage has a spiritual talk with God. Rage asks God to forgive her for her actions. Confessions of a young girl stressin. The song has a darker mood, tone, and vibe than all of the other songs on this album. Confessions serves as the closer for Necessary Roughness. References to the Christian religion are made hence the theme of Christianity.

BGOTI is the female R&B/soul group singing at the beginning. They serve as the altar chorus.

Make a joyful noise unto the lord, all ye lame
Serve the lord with gladness
Come before his presence with singing
Know, ye that the lord is one
It is he that has made us, not we ourselves
We are his people
In the sheep of his pasture
Enter, enter, enter, enter
Enter, enter, enter, enter

Robin, Robin, Robin
Robin, Robin, pray
Robin, Robin, Robin
Robin, Robin, pray
Robin, Robin, Robin
Robin, Robin, pray

Rage asks God for forgiveness in Verse 1.

Forgive me God, for I have forsaken thee
I’m not gonna say that it’s the devil that’s makin me
Do what I do, the things that I’ve done
Just because I’m young, and it’s all for fun
I never really thought about the consequences
But ever since Eazy died, I said “Now Ima listen”
Yay, though I walk through the valleys of death
I open my eyes, they droppin like flies, my last breath
Might get snatched, taken, broke down I’m shaken
Shaken by that shit that’s breakin
Down your nervous system
So, if you’re nervous listen
Kissin cousins die by the dozens
Because I like good lovin will I burn in a oven
Fiery furnace
Cause sometimes the yearn gets
Tempting so I yield into temptation
Intoxication mixed with fornication
Face the nation, face the revelation the ending
Will I be caught up in the rapture
Or will I be left behind because what I’m caught up in got me captured
Amazin Grace, could save a wretch like me
But a wretch like me feels that Hell is already my destiny (Why?)
Because I messed with He (Who?), him
He who sends them
The demons
I see em schemin amongst my dreamin
They tell me he awaits suddenly I awake
I got a funny feelin it won’t be long before He
Takes my soul that was the deal all for mass appeal
Dollar dollar bill, now my fate seems sealed
The nails in the coffin, he’s coughin, I’m lookin
Through my iris
To see if he’s got the virus
Paranoia starts to sink in
Deranged thoughts start to blink in
And out of my mind playin tricks on me
Sufferin with suicidal tendencies, since ten plus three
On bended knee I ask what’s intended for me cause I can’t cope
Some tellin me I ain’t shit, some tellin me I ain’t got no hope
Confessions of a young girl stressin
Sittin alone sweatin, burnin cigarettes into my flesh
Not knowin where I’m going, Can’t understand why I came
I can’t stand the rain, so I’m self inflictin pain
Gotta get a grip
Gotta hold on a little tighter to the end of this rope, before I slip
Into insanity
Lost within calamity
Forgive me for I know not what I do but what I’ve done
I confess with my tongue
To you
He who created heaven and earth, but still I’m still confused
I don’t know what to do
Is there some way that you
Could just clear my visions
Can’t see you with false prophets and religions
But I’m driven to find the force that keeps me livin
But ifn’I might be mistaken
They tell me I’ll be held accountable and fried like bacon
But wait, when I didn’t ask to come here
Why is this all unclear
I can’t understand, it all seems unfair
They tell me not to question God, but the question is
Will I make it to live another day cause times gettin hard
So you tell me to believe, have the faith of a mustard seed
Ask and I shall receive
And you’re all I need
Indeed, this may be true
I’m tryin to find my link to you
But, for all the things I do, I might not even make it through
Because we’re all born in sin, so nine times out of ten
We’re all gonna die in sin, same thing all over again
But, I don’t wanna fry God, I don’t even wanna die
So many tears I cry, so many years I try
I know I’ve done wrong I know I sing the same ole song
But truly I seek a righteous way, that’ll lead me to be strong
In spirit and mind, body and soul
Deliver me from evil make me whole
God take control
Before it’s too late, before you turn me over to a reprobate mind
Before you cast me in a lake of fire with my kind
Of sinners, for I am a sinner, I confess
I pray you forgive me and do bless
My soul to the very end
This I ask God forgive me

Below is a summary of what Rage asks God in terms of forgiveness.

Forgive me God for I have forsaken thee. It’s not the devil that is making her do the things she has done. Just because she was young and all for her amusement. She never really thought about the consequences. But ever since Eazy-E died, she will listen.

She walks through the valleys of death. Rage is aware her last breath might get snatched and taken away from her. She asks, “Will I burn in a oven?” This is because she loves sex. Because sometimes the yearn for sexuality gets tempting. So Rage yields into temptation. Intoxication mixed with fornication. Face the nation. Face the revelation.

She wonders if she will be caught up in the rapture or left behind. What she has got herself caught up in got her captured. Amazing Grace could save a wretch like her. But a wretch like her feels that Hell is already her destiny. Because she messed with He. He who sends them. The demons. She sees demons scheming amongst herself dreaming. They tell her he awaits. Suddenly Rage awakes. Rage has a funny feelin it won’t be long before He takes her soul. That was the deal all for mass appeal. This is a consequence for Rage singing to a major record label.

Now her fate seems sealed. The nail is in the coffin. Paranoia starts to sink in. Deranged thoughts start to blink in and out of her mind playin tricks on her. Suffering with suicidal tendencies.On bended knee, Rage asks what’s intended for her because she can’t cope. Some tell her she is shit. Some tell her she has no hope.

Confessions of a young girl stressin. Sitting alone and sweating. It’s to the point where Rage is burning cigarettes into her own flesh. She can’t understand why she came there. She does not know where she is going or where she is headed towards. I can’t stand the rain, So she is self-inflicting pain and exhibiting self-injurious behaviors.

She asks God to forgive her for what she has done. Lost within calamity. She confesses to God with her tongue. She’s still confused. Not knowing what to do. She asks if there is some way He could clear her visions. Can’t see you with false prophets and religions? Rage is driven to find the force that keeps her living.

Why is this all unclear? It all seems unfair. They tell her not to question God, but the question is will Rage make it to live another day? Because times are getting hard.

For all the things she does, she might not even make it through. Because we’re all born in sin, so nine times out of ten we’re all gonna die in sin. Same thing all over again. Rage cries so many tears. But truly Rage seeks a righteous way that will lead her to be strong in spirit, mind, body, and soul. Deliver her from evil. Make me holy. God, take control before it’s too late, Before He turns Rage over to a reprobate mind. Before He casts her in a lake of fire with her kind of sinners for she is a sinner. She prays and asks for forgiveness. Amen.

At the end of the song where Rage concludes everything by asking God if he hears her. She asks for him to take a walk with her and have a talk with her.

Hey God, can you hear me?
Can you see me?
I can see heaven there
Let me see, what’s wrong with me
Hey God, come take a walk with me
Hey God, come have a talk with me
Hey God

I rate this album 4/5****!!

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