Release Date: Feb. 13, 1996
Label: Death Row/Interscope
The first track off B.I.G.’s Life After Death is “Somebody’s Gotta Die,” which is a good song. The first track off 2Pac’s All Eyez On Me is “Ambitionz Az a Ridah,” which, in the grand tumult of humanity, is the only song that’s ever mattered. (Sorry, Big.) With Johnny J, Dre, Daz, and Quik on the boards, 2Pac dropped the biggest number of hits and gems ever squeezed onto a single rap album; admittedly, like B.I.G.'s Life After Death, this one's a double-disc. All Eyez on Me hosts 2Pac's tremendous, notoriously enigmatic range; 2Pac is on here confronting #BlackOnBlackCrime, inventing mixed drink orders, and reconciling his feminism with his dick. “I used to fiend for your sister but never went up in her” is the trillest pledge of brotherhood in a genre that offers much competition on that front. If “Whatz Ya Phone #” wasn't on here, and if 2Pac didn't swear so goddamn much, I swear the deacons of my hometown church would've stomped down the aisles to this album. Gospel instrumentation and all.