Published Wed, May 24, 2023 at 4:30 PM EDT
In May 1994, Jeru The Dama dropped his eagerly awaited, full length, DJ Premier-produced debut album The Sun Rises In The East.
The previous year, Jeru dropped "Come Clean", an indictment on the "Gangsta Rap" and "Thug Rap" that was starting to dominate on the west and east coasts respectively. DJ Premier's bare bones production on the track was just as celebrated as Jeru's smooth in the pocket flow. The track that resembled dripping water on top of hard drums with an Onyx provided hook was one of the best Hip-Hop releases of 1993.
"Come Clean" further solidified an already official DJ Premier as one of the most prolific producers and DJs of the era and introduced Jeru (who premiered on "I'm The Man" from Gang Starr' Daily Operation) as an MC too look out for.
The Sun Rises In The East was part of a revival of sample based "boom bap" styled Hip-Hop along with Enter The Wu-Tang, Illmatic, Ready To Die, Enta Da Stage, Dah Shinin' and Badafucup. The album, produced entirely by DJ Premier, produced the singles "D.Original" and "You Can't Stop The Prophet." "My Mind Spray," "Mental Stamina," "Brooklyn Took It" and "Ain't The Devil Happy" are all among Premier's best work, and exemplifies of the intelligence, wit and laser like flow and cadence of Jeru.
The Sun Rises In The East is a perfect sonic representation of 1994, and even the album cover which portrays the attempted bombing of the World Trade Center's north tower seven years before 911 is representative of the era.