Despite Their Name, Brothas Unda Madness Were No Hip-Hop B.U.M.S. (Video)

Although G-Funk was ruling the West Coast in the mid-1990s, there was still a small but strong contingent of Heads that were practice more traditional Rap. These artists tended to show love to all four elements of Hip-Hop culture, rather than just MCing. Collectives like Hieroglyphics and The Likwit Crew, as well as groups like The Pharcyde, Freestyle Fellowship, and The B.U.M.S. leaned towards a more jazzy sound and put a heavy emphasis on substance-based lyrics. If the last duo isn’t ringing any bells, don’t worry, you’re not alone.

This Oakland, California act consists of MCs Evocalist and D-Wyze, and their name is an acronym for “Brothas Unda Madness.: While their one and only album, Lyfe ’N’ Tyme, dropped on well-respected Los Angeles-based label Priority Records, and was generally loved by fans and critics alike, these rappers faded into obscurity shortly after their debut in 1995. Other than being a highly listenable album that stands the test of time, their LP is also notable because it features early production from Fredwreck, as well as a guest verse from Mystic half a dozen years before her lauded debut.

Other Ambrosia For Heads Do Remember Features

The B.U.M.S. first commercially available single was “Elevation (Free My Mind),” which dropped in 1994. The cut utilized a horn and flute loop from the Teddy Pendergrass classic “Close The Door.” E and Wyze both kick solid verses that call out other rappers for selling out for a quick buck. Ironically, the video seems to have been given a sizeable budget, as the FX are quality for the era and the accoutrements are high-end.

The visual also features a ton of cool cameos including lyricists Ahmad, Ras Kass, and Xzibit (all of whom worked with Fred around this time, too), Sway Calloway, and the ultimate B-boy, Crazy Legs. In fact, the Rock Steady Crew’s preeminent breaker does his thing throughout the whole vid and even gets 20 seconds at the end to straight get busy.