The posthumously-released album received widespread critical acclaim, earning The Source’s coveted 5-mic rating, and despite its hefty tracklist of 24 songs spread across two-discs, Life After Death was noted for its no frills, no filler approach, with the “Life After Death Intro” and the “B.I.G. Interlude” rounding out the album’s only intermissions.
While Biggie’s debut album, Ready To Die kept a close knit of producers behind the boards, Life After Death enlisted a who’s who of A-list producers, including everyone from Carlos “July Six” Broady, Puff Daddy, DJ Premier, Easy Mo Bee, Buckwild, Deric “D-Dot” Angelettie and the RZA — and although cluttered on paper, the album flowed seamlessly from front to back.
Songs like the Premo-laced “Kick In the Door” (rumored to be subliminal disses aimed at Nas, Raekwon and Ghostface Killah) helped reestablish Biggie as the rightful owner of the King of New York crown, while more pop-leaning tunes, including “Mo Money Mo Problems” and “Hypnotize”—released just four months apart from each other—helped catapult the album into uncharted history.
In just five short months, Life After Death would clutch its first platinum plaque, and three years later, on January 6, 2000, the album was officially certified diamond by the RIAA, selling more than 10M copies worldwide, and marking the first rap album at the time to claim such a prestigious feat (while 2 Pac’s All Eyez On Me, released a year prior, did go diamond, it’s important to note the album received the certification in 2014).
Join us in remembering Life After Death by streaming the album below and share your favorite memories and songs from the album in the comment section.
As an added bonus, check out five facts surrounding Life After Death that you may have not known below.