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“Criminals” marks the debut studio album of America’s Most Wanted (A.M.W.), an Oakland-based rap group known for their Gangsta hip-hop style. Released in 1990 under the Triad Records label, the album showcases the group’s raw talent and passion for creating hard-hitting music with powerful messages about street life and the struggles faced by those living in Oakland.
The album kicks off with the title track “Criminals,” setting the stage for the group’s exploration of the darker side of urban life. “Addicted To The Dope Game” delves into the allure and consequences of getting involved in the drug trade, while “Soldier Story” offers a glimpse into the life of those fighting for survival in a tough environment.
“Street Life” and “License To Kill” continue the album’s themes of violence and struggle, with the group’s gritty lyrics painting a vivid picture of their experiences. “Crazy Motha F____” and “Gangster Shi_” further solidify A.M.W.’s reputation for delivering raw, unfiltered narratives about life in the streets.
“Deep End” and “Armed And Dangerous” showcase the group’s storytelling abilities, immersing listeners in a world where danger lurks around every corner. “Can You Step To This” and “Prophylactic” offer a change of pace, providing a blend of powerful beats and lyrics that keep the listener engaged.
The album concludes with “I Gives A F___ About A B____,” a bold track that demonstrates the group’s refusal to bow to societal expectations and their commitment to staying true to their roots.
“Criminals” serves as an impactful introduction to A.M.W.’s unique sound and style, offering a raw and unfiltered look into the lives of those who live on the fringes of society. With powerful lyrics and captivating beats, the album stands as a testament to the group’s talent and passion for their art.
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