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Phrenology [Explicit Lyrics]

The RootsAudio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (102 customer reviews)

Price: $11.18 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Amazon Price New from Used from
MP3 Music, 16 Songs, 2011 $5.99  
Audio CD, Explicit Lyrics, 2002 $11.18  

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Phrenology + Things Fall Apart + Illadelph Halflife
Price for all three: $30.34

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 26, 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Explicit Lyrics
  • Label: Mca
  • ASIN: B00007B9DP
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (102 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,022 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Phrentrow
2. Rock You
3. Sacrifice (feat. Nelly Furtado)
4. Rolling With Heat (feat. Talib Kweli)
5. WAOK Roll Call
6. Thought At Work
7. The Seed 2.0 (feat. Cody Chestnutt)
8. Break You Off (feat. Musiq)
9. Water
10. Quills
11. Pussy Galore
12. Complexity (feat. Jill Scott)
13. Something In The Way Of Things [In Town] (feat. Amiri Baraka)

Editorial Reviews


If you were wondering what the heck phrenology means, the Roots wouldn't have it any other way. Hip-hop's hardest-working live band continues where they left off with Things Fall Apart, forcing listeners to think outside of the Hot 97 FM box--or just plain think. On "Thought at Work," lead emcee Black Thought--the most criminally underrated wordsmith of his time--weaves captivating flows over a neck-snapping break beat, while on "Water" he boldly addresses the controversy surrounding his partner-in-rhyme Malik B's alleged substance abuse. While collaborations with Nelly Furtado ("Sacrifice") and Talib Kweli ("Rhymes and Ammo") read much better on paper than they sound, the catchy, up-tempo call-and-response routine utilized by the crew on the latter song will amp up Roots nonbelievers. As a bonus, Jill Scott's dreamy falsetto refrain hammers home some finer points about love on "Complexity." --Dalton Higgins

Product Description

CD W/Musiq/Jill Scott/Talib Kweli/Nelly Furtado/Cody Chesn

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 of 2 5 star hip hop albums I own February 28, 2004
Format:Audio CD
This is in my opinion the best Roots album I own, and I have all of them except the live cd (by the way, you got to see these guys live- seeing ?uestlove on the drums is amazing). Each of their other albums gets 4/5 stars from me. I love good hip hop (Roots, Blackalicious, Common, GangStarr, Mos Def, Jurassic 5 etc) but I am almost always disappointed with the albums. They are either repetitive, use intro/outro/midtros that ruin the flow of the album or are cool for one listen, or they are not solid throughout. This album has none of those traits, and that is why I give it 5 stars. They do use an intro and a midtro, but it flows with the album. They mix up the songs and the beats like on all their albums, and do not get repetitive (be warned: in order to not get repetitive they include some rock songs and even a head banging song). And every song is at least 4/5 in my book. I highly recommend this album to anyone who enjoys hip hop, and to anyone who enjoys good music. These guys are really impressive; get all their albums to see what I am talking about.
If you like this try Common "Like Water For Chocolate" Mr. Lif "Emergency Rations" Mos Def/Talib Kweli "Black Star"& Blackalicious "Blazing Arrow" (which is the other 5 star album I own).
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29 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Once Again May 22, 2003
Format:Audio CD
Here's the deal... I lament for the good ol' days just as much as the next man. Some times I'll pass by some kids who'll be bumpin some of the recent [garbage] and it saddens me to think that they don't know what they've missed. But I also know that a good deal of the problem is actually me. We can't replace the times that were - be it the sights, sounds, tastes or loves and that's not only a fact but it's a good thing. Something living on in memory is part of human experience and you can't convince me that our lives wouldn't be a little diminished if what was was for all time (if you can follow that). There's no way I could enjoy this album as much as "Do You Want More?" and I'm glad for it. But the fact of the matter is, this is a high quality set. There isn't any unlistenable music here. Yes... the shout out track and the noise at the end of Water are worth little more than the light aerobic exercise you'll get moving for the 'skip forward' button. And yes... I too was put off a bit by the relentless r&b vibe of Break You Off (though I've come to enjoy the song on it's on merits). Yes, the...er, 'cat' word is said a few too many times on track 11 (though isn't that kind of the point). And yes, any child could come up with a better refrain than shouting "We will rock you!" Nonetheless, all that "The Roots have changed and I don't like it" jazz needs to stop. I too have noticed that there's been a great decrease in the number of MCs that appear but the argument (made a couple here) that Black Thought can not carry the lyrical side of things by himself is baseless and perplexing. I've long thought that the man was underrated but after giving this a couple of twirls I've come to the conclusion that he's just one of the greatest to ever hold a mic. Read more ›
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quality music for the those sick of mainstream rap August 18, 2004
By kankan
Format:Audio CD
Ironically, my first introduction to the Roots was from their concert cameo of The Seed w/Cody Chestnutt in some atrocious Mandy Moore movie. Thankfully, it opened me up to the world of The Roots. I immediately bought Phrenology, in hopes of finding more of the Neo-soul/rock combo of The Seed. The singular song was a promo for Chesnutt, whose album I also raced out to buy (which turned out to be a stinker). Fortunately, The Roots' unique style, universally agreed as raw & organic, is nothing like the droning trash spewed out by hiphop stations. At this point, I cannot contribute much opinion in the way of a real rap aficionado but I can say that The Roots have converted me into a devout fan and I have been listening to all of their albums everyday for the past month. The intelligent lyrics and unforgettable melody have a musicality that is achieved only by real musicians. Phrenology is the ultimate fruits of this labor. Subsequently, I bought their other albums: The Tipping Point, Things Fall Apart, and Come Alive and I would say that Phrenology is the most cohesive of all of them, though the best performance would have to be their live album, Come Alive (with a phenomenal performance of "You Got Me" w/Jill Scott!!!). I definitely recommend this album as an intro to the Roots to those who are curious and interested in hip-hop/rap but are put off by the inanity of the modern mainstream hits.

Standout tracks: Sacrifice, Thought @Work, The Seed 2.0, Water, Pussy Galore
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
By I.B.
Format:Audio CD
The roots took it on a different level this time around which is something I like. Well when you look at the steps they made they always try to take it one step forward with every new project. This album brings it all tho....rock, a lil reggae, blues and R+B all on one live mix of tight beats and rythms that keep you listening all the way through. Songs I was feeling here:
*Break You off
*Rock You
*The Seed(2.0) -- this is the song right here
*P**y Galore
*Something in the way of Love
They came on a very abstract vibe this time around while still using a famailr sound everyone knows. Anyone trying to hear hip-hop on a not so typical level with more deeper lyrics.....on a more alternative vibe should check this out.
Get it!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Good older album
I mostly got this album because my disc version got scratched real bad. I wasn't able to rip it, so I just bought it again.
Published 1 day ago by LBKewee
5.0 out of 5 stars awesome
really awesome album altogether the songs are meaningful and deep just like the artists themselves overall really like it and even love it
Published 6 months ago by Ivan Djambazov
5.0 out of 5 stars Great album!
I love the Roots and am happy to be able to add this album to my collection. And, as a Philadelphian I'm proud to have them represent my town and keep hip-hop going for years to... Read more
Published 11 months ago by fareed
5.0 out of 5 stars Good
If you like the roots you will like this album. I had never heard before but I really like and recommend.
Published 14 months ago by pinbwiz
4.0 out of 5 stars Complete
I've bought this album like three times it something for every listener R&B, old school hip hop, little rock you name it
Published 21 months ago by massey313
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Hip-Hop group
My introduction to The Roots. This is the album that made me purchase all the others, before and after it. My favorite: The Seed, The perfect combination of Hip-Hop and Rock.
Published on August 14, 2011 by Tijey
5.0 out of 5 stars This album is awesome!
This is by far my favorite Roots album. I had to purchase this after I left my other last CD in a rental car. Read more
Published on February 21, 2011 by Pinkness3
5.0 out of 5 stars The Roots Planted Firmly
Having little previous experience with The Roots outside Questlove's outside production work for others this album comes as something of a surprise. Read more
Published on November 10, 2010 by Andre S. Grindle
3.0 out of 5 stars We do want more
At this point we all root for the Roots to release their definitive album, seemingly approaching that lofty plateau in incremental steps that betray their vision.
Published on March 5, 2010 by IRate
4.0 out of 5 stars Find Out What Phrenology Means
Phrenology is another Roots gem. Without question, The Roots continue to make "good music." For those who rated this cd 3 stars or lower obviously don't know what Phrenology means. Read more
Published on January 23, 2010 by X Man
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Topic From this Discussion
Punchline Rap
i'd look up wordsworth or mad skillz, sometimes just know as skillz. both these guys made their whole career off punchline rap
Feb 17, 2009 by M. hoffman |  See all 2 posts
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