Aside from Wu-Tang, The LOX are my favorite music group.
They’ve been releasing material for nearly two decades, but the weird thing is that some of their best songs never appeared on any of their albums, instead popping up on soundtracks, DJ compilations, other artists’ projects, and most especially mixtapes. A little over a year ago, NahRight posted 20 classic LOX mixtape cuts and while I tried not to duplicate that list too much, there were a few that I couldn’t help but including here.
I only had two rules for songs to be included on this list:
1. These songs could not appear on either of The LOX’s official albums (Money, Power & Respect or We Are the Streets) or on any of the members’ solo LPs.
2. All three LOX members need to be on the song. Even if it’s just a hook, they all need to be present.
These two stipulations eliminated some of my favorites, but rules are rules.
“Dirty Ryders [Training Day]” off the Training Day soundtrack (2001)
“Tommy’s Theme” off the Belly soundtrack (1998)
“Who Did You Expect” off DJ Clue’s Backstage: A Hard Knock Life soundtrack (2000)
“The Streetsweeper” off Kay Slay’s The Streetsweeper Vol. 1 (2003)
“Go Head” off Ruff Ryders’ Ryde or Die Vol. II (2000)
“Ruff Ryders 4 Life” off Ruff Ryders’ Vol. 4: Redemption (2005)
“D-Block” off DJ Envy’s The Desert Storm Mixtape: Blok Party, Vol. 1 (2003)
“The Essence” off Alchemist’s 1st Infantry (2004)
“Bars” off Tony Touch’s The Piece Maker 3: Return of the 50 MC’s (2013)
As Featured Artists
“Reservoir Dogs” off Jay-Z’s Vol. 2…Hard Knock Life (1998)
“D-X-L [Hard White]” off DMX’s …And Then There Was X (1999)
“Scenario 2000″ off Eve’s Let There Be Eve…Ruff Ryders’ First Lady (1999)
“Ready for War” off Drag-On’s The Opposite of H20 (2000)
“Thug in the Street” off Eve’s Scorpion (2001)
“Mighty D-Block [2 Guns Up]” originally off DJ Green Lantern’s Invasion Part II: Conspiracy Theory mixtape (2003)
“The Hitmen” off Fabolous’s Loso’s Way: Rise to Power mixtape (2006)
Randoms and Unreleased
“Scenario 2000” Freestyle featuring Drag-On (1999)
“D-Block Freestyle” (2001)
“Jigga That N—a” Freestyle (2002)
“Somebody’s Girl” Freestyle featuring J-Hood (2002)
“Touch the Sky” Freestyle featuring J-Hood (2005)
“Nosestalgia” Freestyle (2013)
“D-Block Burial” featuring J-Hood
They recently released their first official group album in 15 years, but Jadakiss, Styles P and Sheek Louch have been dropping great songs in that time.
All entries in the Classic Non-Album Cuts series:
Christopher Pierznik’s eight books are available in paperback and Kindle. His work has appeared on XXL, Cuepoint, Business Insider, The Cauldron, Medium, and many more. Subscribe to his monthly reading review newsletter or follow him on Facebook or Twitter.