Derek B Bullet From A Gun

Okay, yes I know this album is not particularly “britcore” in the Hijack, Gunshot, Killa Instinct sense (ie. relentless hardcore barrages of hyper beats and aggressive rhymes) BUT I have to give it some words here as it was the first UK album I ever bought and therefore have a soft spot for it. Besides, for the most part it’s a pretty decent album yet it’s rarely praised.

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Derek B ‎– Bullet From A Gun Label: Mercury ‎– 834 732-2, Phonogram ‎– 834 732-2, Tuff Audio ‎– 834 732-2. Derek B, Category: Artist, Albums: Legends - Derek B, Bullet from a Gun, Bullet From a Gun, Singles: Bad Young Brother (UK Chart Top 20 - No. 16), We've Got the JuiceWe Got the Juice (UK Chart Top 100 - No. 56), Who Dares Wins, Bad Young Brother (The Hyped to F. Mix), Chillin' with Santa, Top Tracks: Bad Young Brother, Bullet from a Gun, Rock the Beat, Get Down, Chillin' with Santa. Chief rocker Derek B is a bad young brother (Bust the beat, oh yeah) Chief rocker, bad young brother. Bullet From A Gun Derek B. Bullet From A Gun 2. Bad Young Brother 3. Power Move (Missing. Find album release information for Bullet from a Gun - Derek B on AllMusic. Derek B - Bullet From a Gun (1988) FLAC or mp3. This could be my favourite album of all time. It defines Hip Hop's coming of age. UK Derek B's Got.

I have to start off by saying that there’s not all that much that signifies the album’s British origins and sets it apart from releases by notable US artists from the same era.Vocally, Derek sounds somewhat like Criminal Minded era KRS One and has similar delivery at times with only a hint of a British accent popping up occasionally, however I’ve heard far more blatant attempts at sounding American (in fact he sounds even more like KRS One’s mate, Willie D, who appeared on the Sly and Robbie album). He does throw in lines such as “we get paid in pounds not in dollars”, has a Rover on his album cover and mentions London and England often enough so we can be rest assured that he’s not out to deny or fool anyone regarding his background.

Musically, at times, the production swims around in the pool of Def Jam artists like PE, Run DMC, Beasties and Cool J circa 1987/88, reinforced by the fact that samples are used throughout the LP from some of those artists. I can’t help feeling that the goal of Derek and his label cohorts at the time was to sit alongside his US Def Jam idols rather than come out with a unique new style heavily rooted in UK influence, as London Posse did soon after. Although Derek himself may want to dispute that, as one his lyrics from the punchy beat attack of “All City” states “don’t copy Run DMC or LL Cool J, be original you’ll go further that way”. Somewhat fair enough words for him to say I suppose as he’s not 100% directly copying anyone but the aforementioned influences are very strong, which is probably understandable given that UK hip hop in 1988 was really only in the fledgling stages of building its own identity and Def Jam was the HOTTEST hip hop of the day.

Derek B Bullet From A Gun Shop

The best tracks here are pretty damn good and they rock solid in good old 808 kick drum way and yes they do allude to the Def Jam influences. “Bullet From a Gun” hits slow, low and hard over a booming beat coupled with handclaps with sounds of bullets added for maximum effect. It’s actually quite similar to Cool J’s “I’m Bad”, albeit a slower and more simplistic version of it. 1st album Public Enemy sound comes into total E F F E C T on “Power Move” which even has Flavor Flav and Chuck saying a few words about Derek at the start of the track. Imagine a different MC over “Public Enemy No. 1” or one of those tracks and you have “Power Move”. The Funky Drummer driven “Human Time Bomb” could also sit on the same PE album and even has a Professor Griff soundalike providing backup on the track. No diss though, they’re all dope tracks despite their obvious forefathers of influence.

There are also a couple nice tracks which sizzle with a more unique flavour. “Bad Young Brother” ups the overall tempo with heavy pacey drum programming and wicked transformer scratching throughout and Derek going hell for leather on the mic in probably his best vocal performance on the album. “All City” has some banging and reasonably rapid drums hitting behind the rhymes but suffers a bit from the cheesy familiar heavy metal riff in the chorus. The most commercial track here is “Good Groove” which surprisingly sits pretty nicely with me as I love anything to do with the The Jackson 5 as “ABC” is sampled for the chorus and the James Brown funk woven through “Get Down” also has pianos from “The Love You Save”. Wonder if/how he cleared those samples?

Derek B Bullet From A Gun Show

One thing that needs to be mentioned before this review is done. Derek B actually appears as his DJ, Easy Q, on this album and it seems that Easy Q is sometimes the alter-ego that's rhyming at times also ?!?! In fact Derek rhymes about Easy Q (and vice versa) as if they were two different people but well he's really talking to himself. It’s all very confusing and slightly bizarre in a split personality schizophrenic sort of way. Derek B actually takes on the role of MC, DJ AND producer ! Very one man band Prince Rogers Nelson isn’t it.

Derek B Bullet From A Gun Album

Of the 10 tracks on the vinyl version I own of this album (some CD versions have more tracks) I have mentioned 6 or 7 here as standouts and in fact the remainder are by no means wack, just perhaps somewhat plain and boring. Therefore, overall I quite like this album. Sure it’s not that original, sure it doesn’t have England written all over it but taken at face value with the simple intention of enjoying some solid “late old school/early golden era” hip hop you wouldn’t do too badly in seeking out this album.