DJ Krisfader – Mixtape Vol. II

This weeks’s mixtape drop is something rare dedicated to all my French Hip Hop heads, more specifically those from Lyon where I lived as a teenager; I give you DJ Krisfader Mixtape Vol. II. France has a very strong Hip Hop scene which really came into fruition during the Nineties when rap music took over the national airwaves and the biggest artists started collaborating directly with figureheads from the New York scene. For reference, Paris’ NTM featured with Nas, AZ, Foxy Brown and Cormega on the Affirmative Action Remix, while Marseille’s IAM joined forces with member of the Wu Affiliate Royal Fam Sunz of Man for their hit single Le Saga. Similar to the New York – Los Angeles rivalry except far less bloody, the two biggest cities in France, Paris and Marseille, exchanged lyrical shots back and forth in a bid to dominate the scene. Meanwhile, located more or less halfway between the two is Lyon, France’s third largest city, acting as the gateway between North and South and drawing inspiration from each side. During the mid-Nineties, mixtapes flooded the French market when independent distributor Passe-Passe started importing Tape Kingz cassettes straight from Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn. With American DJs spreading the gospel of rap music around the world, it was natural for homegrown DJs to get their shine on too. Paris had DJ Cut Killer, Marseille had DJ Kheops and Lyon had DJ Krisfader.

I met DJ Krisfader at the Radio Brume studios, a college station where he hosted the Bring Da Noise rap show every Thursday night.  Record deals were few and far between for French rappers that weren’t living in Paris or Marseille. Kris recognised the talent within the region and left a good 30 minutes of each radio show open for live freestyle sessions. The most talented rappers would end up featuring on his mixtapes. On Mixtape Vol. II, local rappers FLO, AINE and Illicite drop some hot bars over choice instrumentals. On a personal note, as a fan of graffiti, it’s cool to hear Illicite shout out the legendary PSP, TTC and NRV crews in his lyrics.

If you were listening to mixtapes in 1996, you were most certainly nodding your head to tracks by Busta Rhymes, Jay-Z, Mobb Deep, Smoothe Da Hustla and the Wu Tang Clan who were all at the top of their game during this period. Obviously all of these rappers feature on Mixtape Vol. II, but DJ Krisfader also dug out a handful of lesser-known artists that were yet to release gold or platinum albums. Da Youngstas, Rawcotiks and Young Zee get their shine on as do Wu affiliates Shabazz the Disciple and Royal Fam. Another aspect that’s recommendable for Krisfader and Mixtape Vol. II is the inclusion of several female emcees. Heather B, Bahamadia and Roslyn Noble exemplify some sort of parity with their male cohorts. One final thing that makes this tape dope is how Kris drops Blahzay Blahzay’s Danger Pt. 2 (the remix) and follows it up straight away with the original cut Danger Pt. 1. This track was the anthem during the mid-Nineties and always caused a reaction from the fans.

I have a couple more mixtapes by Krisfader to upload, so stay tuned. In the meantime ecoutez bien Mixtape Vol. II


Side A:

Prologue – FLO
The Mad Scientist – Large Professor
Everybody get – Young Zee
If headz only knew – Heather B
Rugged Ruff – Bahamadia
Funkorama – Redman
Hardcore Hip Hop – Rawcotiks
Freestyle – AINE
Dead Presidents – Jay-Z
Danger Pt. 2 – Blahzay Blahzay, Smoothe da Hustla, Trigga de Gambla
Danger Pt. 1 – Blahzay Blahzay
Freaky Flow (DJ Premier remix) – Special Ed
Microphone Master – Das EFX
In the studio – Roselyn Noble

Side B:

Intro – AINE
Crime Saga – Shabazz the Disciple
Summin’ gotz to give – Royal Fam
Inner City Life – Group Home
Freestyle – Illicite
Fuck what ya heard – Smoothe da Hustla
Woo hah! – Busta Rhymes
Verbal Glock – Da Youngstas
Shadow Boxin – GZA, Method Man
How many encees? (Remix) – Black Moon
Winter Warz – Wu-Tang Clan
Recognize & Realize – Big Noyd, Mobb Deep
Outro – FLO

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