R.A. the Rugged Man Die, Rugged Man, Die

Ever heard of R.A. the Rugged Man? Well you probably never will — at least not on commercial radio. And you probably haven't heard of him because he's never actually released a record until now. The story of R.A. is bananas (look him up on the internet... it's unbelievable.) He's featured on all three of Rawkus’s Soundbombing albums, as well as the WWF Aggression album. And now he's back to reclaim the title of being "mad famous for being unknown" — but for those in the know, he's very well known. Die Rugged Man, Die is pure, unadulterated, parental-advisory-plastered, grimy, dope hip-hop. R.A. can flip it like a mofo — his verbal technique is outstanding — and the beats are laced up by his man Nilez. He makes it clear he doesn't want fans and doesn't care about money — he just wants to be heard. "Lessons," the first track, takes you on a journey of everything that's happened to him, while paying homage to all the hip-hop icons of his time. Killah Priest and Masta Killa are featured on the banger "Chains" (produced by Ayatollah, using the Horace Andy "Skylarking" sample); "On the Block" is a beat-box dedication to rap of the past; and "Da' Girlz, They Luv Me" is R.A. sounding like a disgusting, perverted Heavy D. The industry wasn't ready for an Eminem back in the early ’90s when R.A. arrived on the scene, but look at it now. (Nature Sounds)