“Let’s take a little time travel vacation to Daly City, California (just south of San Francisco) to September of ‘95. Travel beneath the surface and enter the 99th Demention, yes that’s right, D-e-m-e-n-tion, as dementia (n. mental deterioration), demented — a world created by Z Man where greedy label lords lure cash-hungry artists to sign their lives away; where robot MCs perform like wind-up toys; where you’ll see a sign that reads, “Will DJ for food” — a world not too different from reality, but where these evils are made clear, and live through the many characters penned by Z Man.
The musical dimension of 99th Demention is fleshed out by Z Man and his associates King Maz, Young Slim, Rated R, Rev Cope and P.B.F.-1. 99th Demention are rebels in rap. They know we’re all tired of the same tired shit and they talk about it. They have ventured out of the 99th Demention to our earthly realm to offer “hip-hop relief for the folks.” Their style is straight Frisco, and yet not. It’s west coast and east coast, and yet neither.
Check the cut “Too Much Sauce,” which warns against the common stereotyping of west coast/Bay Area hip-hop. This music is chaos with a purpose. Young Z Man describes their style as “alternative rap, kinda slammin’ and zesty.” Their originality and new flavor definitely add spice to the life of Bay Area rap, and to world-wide hip-hop for that matter; but the 99th are not in competition with other artists. Their shit will make you laugh (a sense of humor is often lacking in today’s hip-hop), nod ya head and think.
It’s on with the tracks as well. “Each beat is like a character,” says Z Man. He and cousin Young Slim take sounds from everywhere, including cartoons, twist samples around ‘til they’re unrecognizable; and create a lot of their own sounds. DJ Ladron accompanies them on the one-and-two at the group’s live shows.
This self-titled debut on 99¢ Records came out on cassette only. Fast-forward 19 years into the future and it’s here on the information superhighway for all to experience.
Don’t be afraid, people. Go that extra mile and visit the 99th Demention. You’ll soon find yourself coming back for more. See you there.”
I wrote about this release for Origins of Gurp #1 and we are proud to finally make this long out of print album available in digital format for the first time! Hit the link and take a trip back: