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4.7 out of 5 stars19
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 10 May 2000
Common (formerly Common Sense) has been around for some time now, having brought out a number of original, if slightly flawed albums that showed his immense lyrical skills and his unique ability to create soulful hip hop and still maintain a hard edge. He is among that small band of emcees out there including Mos Def, Talib Kweli and Black Thought that are trying to push hip hop forward and save it from the sample-heavy, immature, 'cash-money', 'bling bling' rap that floods the mainstream today.
'Like water for chocolate' is the first true classic album of this century. This is the first album from Common that doesn't drop off at any point. Every track is a blend of intelligent, conscious lyrics with tight and incredibly funky beats. This album features some of the best producers in the business so it is not surprising that sonically, it is possibly the most accomplished album you'll ever hear. The producers include ?uestlove of The Roots, Jay Dee and the unstoppable DJ Premier of Gangstarr. It is Primo's joint 'The 6th Sense' that is the immediate stand out track and unsurprisingly it was the first single. It is straight hip hop.
My favourite track is 'The Light' in which Common raps about love in his unrivalled voice with great feeling. This album is full of clever lyrical twists and it is this that will keep 'Like Water For Chocolate' fresh long after you would have got bored of any other album.
Other great tracks include 'Doin it' where Common has a disguised attack at the likes of Puffy. 'Geto Heaven' too, featuring the immensely talented D'Angelo is a classic. Common shows his social awareness, often lacking in most of hip hop today, on 'A song for Assata', dedicated to a political prisoner.
Simply put, anyone remotely into hip hop or anyone interested in just good music MUST obtain this album. It would not be overstating it to say that this is one of the best albums of the last ten years. Support a rare talent and buy 'Like Water For Choclate' and Reflection Eternal's LP later in the year and fill the pockets of someone other than the likes of Jay-Z, DMX etc. This is real hip hop.
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on 19 September 2003
This is the album most Common fans, and fans of hip-hop in general, remember him for, and thats the way it should stay. This is an excellent display of lyrical mastery, uplifting choruses and great guest appearances.
As is often the case with Common, jazzy beats and samples are used a lot, with 'Coldblooded' being a good example. 'The Light' and 'The 6th Sense' are the tracks you will have heard and these are brilliant. Other standout tracks are 'Funky For You', featuring an excellent chorus sung by Jill Scott, 'Thelonius' and 'A Song for Assata'.
But, the best track on this album is easily track 7, 'The Questions'. The beat is flowing with a beautiful jazz feel that I will never tire of, and the lyrics are both thought-evoking and humourous.
Overall, I would recommend this album for any true fan of hip-hop, and urge them to check his other work, which is also great. Its an easy decision to give this 5 stars.
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on 3 May 2009
There is a small sticker on seald of lp jacket saying "THE FIRST MUST-HAVE HIPHOP ALBUM OF 2000". And I think that beautiful and sad cover photo expresses the theme of segregation and there is notes being written "1956 ALABAMA COUTESY OF Mr.GODON PARKS".But if the word of "chocolate" means black and their soul and the word of "water" means important thing to live, I think this title of "Like Water for chocolate" means important thing for their soul,as it were the rhyme of Common Sence. The beautiful mother and cute children with white dress are drinking the water of their soul. Miles Davis released "doo-bop" on 1991 and he introduced rap music in the world,at the same year Common made his debut. After that he released "Can I Borrow A Dollar?" on 1993,and next year he released "Resurrection". On 1997 he released "One Day It'll All Make Sense" and he became famous. After three years of his getting fame of rapper,"Like Water for Chocolate" was released on 2000. This Album was produced by THE SOUL QUARIAN'S ,D'angelo,Questlove and James Poyser, you know. Well I was deeply impressed by "Time Traveln' ". And I think this track paid tribute to Fela is the theme of this album. First I can listen so nostalgic girls voice,and my mind and soul feel like traveling his roots. And Common says and sings "Tell a friend spaces and places you've been time travelin'." Roy Hargrove plays great trumpet and his back sound is fanky,jazzy and nostalgic,I can listen percussion with rap beat. And he sings " Comn Sense 92 and I'm still in this time travelin' turn the hand by what I learn and plan." This album has sparkling 16 tracks set with his heart and soul. And he will tell you spaces and places he has been by his legitimate rhyme. And he will keep on wrting his rhyme and rapping to give love and peace and honar.
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VINE VOICEon 3 February 2001
The man formerly known as Common Sense continues to assert his position as hip hop's most intelligent, articulate and humanitarian voice with his fourth album, named after the segregation era practice of providing separate drinking fountains for 'whites' and 'coloureds'. Common's vocal and lyrical dexterity and insight are still perhaps the most astonishing things about his music, but his increasingly funky, complex and tuneful backing is catching up fast. His choice of collaborators and co-producers, as ever, is first-rate, with D'Angelo, Jill Scott, Femi Kuti, The Roots and Mos Def all bringing something to the party, amongst others. 'Heat' is insistent and refreshingly honest, 'The Light' gorgeous and heart-felt, 'Time Travellin' (A Tribute To Fela)' is funky and touched with wonderful, live, jazz-inflected brass, while 'The 6th Sense' is blissful, positive and intelligent. There's little of the self-aggrandisement that so much hip hop trades on here, Common instead choosing to deal with humanity and self-improvement. That's not to say that he's without humour though, as 'A Film Called (Pimp)' cleverly pokes fun at his own reputation whilst firmly putting misogynists in their right place. A resoundingly good album from a resoundingly good guy.
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on 28 March 2012
I bought One Day It'll All Make Sense when it came out - and was a big fan. There was such a jazz influence it made it stand out from the usual dumb bling-rap out there. Over the years - Common has seemingly (and sadly) become more and more commercial and less and less interesting. But - following the reviews of this album I thought I'd give it a go. What a disappointment. To much stereotypical language being used, some great beats and samples but I cant get past a lot of the phrasing.
Shame. Anyone got any recommendations?
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on 25 January 2002
Granted, I don't have a huge hip-hop collection just yet, but I own a number of what are considered to be great albums: the classics. I had never heard any of Common's songs when I ordered this CD, I had just noticed that he had got into the US top 20, while obviously not being commercial. So I bought it.
There are 16 tracks on this album, if you frget the 1st track, the 8th track, and the last track (skit/music things which are listenable yet skippable if you see what I mean) then you are left with the 13 most consistent tracks I have ever heard on an original studio album. Even if 10 of them were absolute garbage, 'The Light', '6th Sense' and 'Geto Heaven'f/ Macy Gray, are three of the most moving, honest, intelectually stimulating, yet catchy pieces of music I have ever heard.
Common's lyrics make sense, but not just that, although they rhyme, it doesn't sound as if that is the reason he uses a word - simply to rhyme. Of contemporary, mainstream(ish) artists that can only truly be said of Mos Def (who features on this album, uncoincidentally, to an extent Eminem and Common. And Common is the best, closely followed by Mos.
Basially, if you have the money buy this album. If you don't borrow it from a friend. If none of your friends have it, I'll tape it and send it to yu to share with the other unenlightened people in your life.
Peace.
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on 12 October 2000
"Like Water For Chocolate" is the latest album from Chicago based rapper Common (formerly known as Common Sense) and is the follow up to his 1997 classic "One Day It'll All Make Sense". Basically Common is a more laid back and mellow version of KRS-1. The album features a laid back style with Common rapping about life and how to live it. The album is excellent and once again sees some of hip hop's freshest beats being combined with educational lyrics about spirituality and self fulfillment and how to act in order to benefit society as a whole. The album is a breath of fresh air from the general sound of hip hop at the moment, where the beats are very monotonous and the subject matter rarely changes and is typically about guns, sex and drugs. The great thing about this album is its really hip hop with a soulful feel to it and is a welcome change. Every track on the album is stunning and the highlights of the album include "Dooinit", "The Light", "Ghetto Heaven Part Two" (featuring D' Angelo), "The Questions" (featuring Mos Def) and "Heat". Overall it's a brilliant alum and one of the best hip hop releases so far this year.
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on 9 March 2001
Simply one of the best Hip Albums one could ever buy... Surely not the most original of first lines but 'Like Water For Cholcolate' is just that original. Inspiring. Thought provoking and all in all Funky. It mixes soul with Jazz and even has some Fela Kuti samples in there. If you've heard 'The Light' and want to know more then buy it rent it steal it borrow it, there isn't another album out there like it. You'll probably dig it's flow and be syncopated with it's rythms. The big hitter'are in there also D'angelo. Jill Scott. Even Common's Dad! So what are you waiting for!
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on 15 March 2001
On this album, Common proves he has perfected the art of consciencious Hip Hop, with a solid brand of Funk and Soul beats coupled with uplifting and socially aware lyrics. Collaborations with labelmate Bilal and D'Angelo produce a varied and entertaining set of tracks, the best of which include The Light and Sixth Sense, released earlier in the year on single.
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on 6 February 2015
Wow it's taken me while to buy this. I've owned every Common album but this one, but I saw him in concert recently (I would recommend him to anyone) and realised I need to check this out. It doesn't have the social commentary of his later albums, but the sound is perfect.
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