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The 411 Online archives: Black Sheep's back
Hip-hop Classic: A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing
Reviews: Non-Fiction | 8WM/Novakane
"Without A Doubt" single | Dres solo album
Video: Choice is Yours | Flavor of the Month
Video: Without A Doubt | Similak | Strobelite
React: Share your thoughts on the comeback

Black Sheep finally return
After a 12-year hiatus from recording albums together, Black Sheep have arisen. 8WM/Novakane dropped Oct. 17, but if you missed it, that's understandable. The album can't be found in stores, but what does that hurt in this era of downloadable music? Dres released the album on his own independent label, Bum Rush, and it's available now on iTunes and eMusic. And of course, links to both spots are on Black Sheep's MySpace page. But the reunion of Dres and Mr. Lawnge seems to be over before it really even got started again. "On the real, Lawnge and I were going through some internal stuff, but we also had some deal offers that didnít feel right. So, I kind of backed up from it and started to retool the album," Dres told XXL. "I wanted the album to come out on its own accord. I feel that it's better because of the time taken out to work on it. It's like how they say, 'No wine before its time.' Now, it's the time. I was able to get my own situation off the ground. Thank God, because Bum Rush is established to not only represent me, it's there to represent my other artists as well. But with Lawnge, he said that he was tired of waiting... He wanted to do the solo thing... He was spending money to do him and I was spending money to do us. It was then that he let me know that that's how it was. I bit my tongue and let him go by saying, 'God Bless.' I just think that he made a mistake by stepping out at this particular time. He was like the original Spinderella, or like the fourth member of Guy. He left at a pivotal moment in our career. The album is really good. But I canít worry about that." On the new album and in the XXL interview, Dres also joins the increasing number of MCs that broke out in the 1980s and '90s who criticize the state of hip-hop. "I see the people getting really tired of what hip-hop is. But I also see hip-hop growing up," Dres said. "To me, I view some of the cats in the game as 'teenagers.' I can understand why they go out and do some of the things that they do, but I also see that hip-hop wants to be something bigger. I see hip-hop's aspiration. We have hundreds of millionaires -- the game provided us with that blessing. We have the opportunity to do things that have never been done before. We're at a point where we can truly create our own businesses, like hospitals and day care centers. We can build something valid in our community. Hip-hop puts a lot of pressure on regular folks to buy things that they can't afford. You know what Stephon Marbury is doing with his new shoes? I'm going to buy them. I don't respect a lot of cats who put a G5 in your face, while some guys are struggling to buy a train ticket. It's not meant for people to have things overnight, but you got guys caught up in keeping up with the Joneses. But at the end of the day, you can't be afraid to put the work in."

-- The 411 Online

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