Review Summary: Intelligent enough for the conscious, poppy enough for the club, and ideal for a 45-minute workout. It's really no secret: some of the most creative beats right now are coming out of Michigan's motor-city, influencing the entire midwest and hip-hop as a whole into the next decade. Now that the generic introduction that could be said of 94.
Perhaps owing to the lingering psychic scars of forced laps in middle school, I don't run. I'm admitting that up front, not as some sort of badge of lazy-ass pop critic pride, but because I've been tasked to review the latest entry in semi-sinister conglomerate/occasional patron of the arts Nike's Original Run series. This time it's De La Soul, using a late-career corporate sponsorship opportunity to both reaffirm their existence and provide an all-new soundtrack for a 45-minute jog.
Nike’s running mixes have certainly grown from what originally appeared to be artist-at-the-helm mixes. From Aesop Rock to LCD Soundsystem, a fair amount of reputable rappers and producers, or both, have tackled the idea of throwing together what is half concept record and half continuous compilation. Either way, they all have the same goal. The point of these mixes is to, with the help of music, make the listener hit the ground running.