By Steven Mirkin
July 12, 1996 at 04:00 AM EDT

The years covered in Electro Funk Volumes One & Two (1982-85) represent an interesting time for rap: The beats had grown ominous, keyboards replaced turntables, and lyrics became more topical. Though the grooves are here, the song selection is spotty, running from classic (Afrika Bambaataa’s ”Planet Rock”) to misguided (Grandmaster Flash’s ”Message II” instead of the epochal ”Message”). Volume One:B- Volume Two: C+