Capone-N-Noreaga Give Us The War Report On Channel 10 | Album Review
CLASSIC RATING: 4 OUT OF 6
The War Report was Capone-N-Noreaga's debut and it was released on June 17, 1997. It featured fellow Queensbridge rappers Mobb Deep as well as some production from Havoc. Also, guest rapper Tragedy Khadafi appears on more than half the songs. Despite having distinct underground sound, it was able to achieve commercial and was certified Gold.
It was the underground sound which gave The War Report it's classic status from both fans and critics. It was off the success of this album that Noreaga was able to forward and become solo artist with considerable mainstream success the following year in 1998.
As a trend killer or trend starter all depending on how you look at it – The War Report was instrumental in the shift from the mafioso style of rap by the likes of The Firm, and Bad Boy Records – into the realistic and gritty street aesthetics which gained popularity during the late 90s and early 00s. The success of Capone-N-Noreaga songs like L.A., L.A. and T.O.N.Y. paved the way for artists DMX and Ja Rule to gain success and later in the 00s with artists like Jadakiss and 50 Cent.
The War Report features a lot of standout songs such as the gritty piano-driven “Blood Money” show a violent side of the hood while the mellower piano stylings of “Live On Live Long” create a memorable anthem which features a realistic story.
The commercial success of The War Report comes in part from its singles with T.O.N.Y. (Top of New York) being the most successful along with the West Coast influenced “Closer”. The first single from the album is hard-hitting Havoc produced Illegal Life which features guest spots from Havoc and Tragedy Khadafi.
However, the most catchy song on the album is the Marley Marl produced “L.A., L.A.” which was a response to Tha Dogg Pound's “New York, New York”. It features a guest verse from Havoc from Mobb Deep as well as Prodigy on the chorus.
The success of this album spurred the group to make a sequel titled The War Report 2: Report The War released in 2010, 13 years after the original.