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The Album Volume One

According to the Homegrown Klik website, Homegrown, also known as “HGK,” was created by DJ Eugenius and Pakalolo when their contract with I-5 South Records was terminated due to creative differences. Eugenius was, of course, an original member of Tacoma, WA rap group Criminal Nation. The Album Volume One from 1996 is essentially a compilation of various Northwest rappers rhyming over Homegrown-produced beats. The album art is all about weed, and the cover photo features the duo next to a giant cannabis plant. Even the disc itself features a big pot leaf, which imitates The Chronic CD design from 1992.

Vocalist Camille successfully lends her sultry singing voice to the smooth chorus of excellent “T-Town” by rapper K-Swiss, but her own solo track “Higher and Higher” is marred by what sounds like unfinished drum programming. There are two cuts by rapper No Name, “Just Another Day,” and “G In This Game.” “Just Another Day” has an easy pace and relatable lyrics about everyday life in Tacoma such as, “You know that it’s hard/to listen to my mama so I disregard/the knowledge and the dreams she’ll preach/but a normal life seems so out of reach.” T Love represents for the ladies, dropping a solid rhyme on her standout cut “You Can’t Get With This,” and she issues multiple challenges to all other rappers.

The Album Volume One highlights include “Tha Alley” by Boneyard Players, which incorporates a faint sample from classic “P.S.K.-What Does It Mean” by OG Philly rapper Schoolly D. “Old Cro'” by Alms For The Poor is oddly unique and humorously stands out among some of the more standard g-funk cuts. Two years after this project, Criminal Nation dropped their third and final album Resurrection in 1998. Homegrown Klik continued to put out albums in the 2000s, including Rasta Riden, U Bangin, and Street Life. Written by Novocaine132

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