Two Dope Boys: The South Got Something To Say (1992-1994)
It starts rather pedestrian for Andre Benjamin and Antwan Patton. After signing on the dotted line to powerhouse label LaFace in 1992, the East Point, Atlanta duo later rise to fame as OutKast. They're introduced to the world as a mere afterthought on a remix to TLC's "What About Your Friends," and we can safely say that the future Sir Lucious Left Foot and Three Stacks would snicker at the quite-green pair flexing its best Das EFX impression. "Forget giggly boogly/I'm attack it like a seizure/I got rhymes at my leisure/Time when I need ta/With T to the L to the C," flips an all too eager Andre. Big Boi inconspicuously jumps into the fray with something about "staying close like ketchup." Cute.
But what a difference a year and some change would make. By the time OutKast releases its landmark 1994 debut album Southernplayalisticcadillacmuzik, the roots of their everything-in-the-gumbo style can be heard. Yes, the tandem backed up by the mighty Dungeon Family crew rides the mighty funk wave that had become the signature sound of the West Coast. But production neophytes Organized Noize makes sure that the grooves are more than just P-Funk reworks. Nods to Bootsy and Curtis Mayfield coexist in a much more laid-back, atmospheric environment. On the title track as well as straight-ahead cuts like "Ain't No Thang" and "Players' Ball," Dre's and Big Boi's rhymes are rough, rugged and raw. The boys are in full-blown furry Kangol rap mode as OutKast's famed yin-and-yang eccentricity is only shown at a glimpse on the strangely brilliant "Hootie Hoo."