Gang Starr, No More Mr. Nice Guy (1989)
Label: Wild Pitch, EMI Records
There's no disputing that Gang Starr will forever be heralded as one of the greatest rap groups of all-time. Guru's slick vocals matched with DJ Premier's timeless production is the perfect pairing. But No More Mr. Nice Guy can't compete with the rest of their classic LPs. It's fair to argue which is better, Moment of Truth or Daily Operation, Hard to Earn or Step in the Arena, but all four of those are easily blowing NMMNG out the box.
It was too early, and though No More Mr. Nice Guy showcased Gang Starr's jazz influence, Guru's smooth lyrics, and Primo's sharp scratches and knack for finding catchy samples, they had yet to perfect the elements that would ultimately give them the chemistry they are now worshipped for having. "Manifest" was memorable, and still might get some burn in a throwback Gang Starr DJ set, but they didn't find their true connection as a duo until their follow-up efforts.