Whenever I hear people talking about slept on MC’s, OC usually comes to mind. I think this is partly due to the fact he still remains very much an underground artist. Jewelz is the sophomore album from the D.I.T.C veteran, and just like his 1994 debut, the critically acclaimed Word…Life, Jewelz manages to re-capture that distinctive dark and menacing tone, only this time with even more eerie and surrealism. DJ Premier, Buckwild, Da Beatminerz and O.Gee all drop 3 songs each while fellow D.I.T.C. members Showbiz and Lord Finesse contribute one number each.
O.C. plays with a wide array of styles on the album; from the war-metaphor battle song “War Games” to abstract stories on the haunting “The Crow” and a very special history on a mystic woman that enters Credles life in “Stronjay“.
Online debates have become almost legendary about which of Omar’s first 2 albums reigns supreme. Choosing any one over the other is an almost impossible task as both are considered “essential”. The replay value on Jewelz is phenomenal as is Word….Life. I have literally listened to this album a million times since it’s 97 release and it amazes me how I still manage to find little things I missed before.
Similarly to Word Life, Jewelz received strong reviews, but lacked in sales. He made his first appearance on the Billboard 200 album chart with the album, and also, his first appearance on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, with the single “Far From Yours”.
ALBUM FACT: As part of the concept for Jewelz, the CD was sold with different coloured disc art inspired by the colour palate of various gem stones.