On this day in 1997, the legendary collective Bone Thugs-N-Harmony delivered their ambitious double album The Art Of War, easily one of hip-hop's best double-disc efforts in recorded history. Boasting a healthy mix of melodic vibes and eerie hyperviolence, the album found Bizzy, Krayzie, Layzie, and Wish at the top of their game; you'd be hard-pressed to find a hip-hop fan who doesn't tout the project as one of Bone's defining bodies of work. While there are plenty of highlights to draw from, it's hard not to appreciate "Handle The Vibe," a smooth introductory cut laced by DJ U-Neek.
Setting things off is Bizzy Bone, rapping like a man possessed -- though when doesn't he? The man's flow is simply unhinged in the best possible way, his salvos firing in double-time like an assault rifle. Matching him in intensity is Krayzie Bone, who lays down an equally impressive verse; one thing Bone doesn't get enough credit for is their ability to bring original flow schemes to their chopping, with each member finding distinct pockets that work for them. Check out "Handle The Vibe" for ample proof of that exact quality, and be sure to show some love to The Art Of War on its twenty-third birthday.
They wanted to get RIP fuckin' wit my sawed-off
Polish it all until it replenished
Soon as I'm finished my pistol get jealous especially 357 me punish you
Buck at me bangin with your magnum for
You crept and you came and shit changed
M-11's grenades and them AK-47's bang