L'École Du Micro D'Argent

Warner Music France

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A TAV Essential Listening Album.

L'École du Micro d'Argent (The School of the Silver Mic) is an album recorded by IAM. The band became famous worldwide with this album, a classic in French hip-hop music. It was partly recorded in the USA, with some aesthetic influences brought by RZA, of the Wu-Tang Clan. On the track "L'Enfer", a sample from Lalo Schifrin's music for Don Siegel's movie "Dirty Harry" can be heard (the electric piano notes).

The album deals with very realistic and dark topics in a sometimes violent and often dark vocal performance. Though it contains few happy "ego-trip" songs, most of these ego songs deal with war metaphors and are sung with violent tone and rhythm. More than the ego schemes, the main topic of the album stay the criticism of French society: life in poor suburbs which leads to a reference to slavery, violence of the youth connected with the violence in television and movies, censorship, racism. At least three songs deal with prostitution, but in ways from irony and fun to violent and dark realism.

The album was a huge success in France. It was said to have sold 1,200,000 copies by rapper Akhenaton in his autobiography La Face B and 1 400 000 copies in a 2011 interview. Other sources tell of 1,500,000 copies. The album is officially certified diamond (1,000,000 copies at the time). In the months following its release, eight of its tracks were played on the rap radio station Skyrock, despite only 4 of them had a music video. The song "Demain, c'est loin", too long to be played on radios, had a music video too. It remains the best selling French hip-hop album.

It is widely considered, among both professionals and the audience, as the best French rap album of all time, though not by the band itself. The album is often quoted as the exception by those who don't like IAM, massilian rap, or French rap in general. The 9 minutes long song "Demain c'est loin" which ends the album has often been quoted as the French Rap Anthem and the best French rap song ever.

The album won the "Best album of the year" prize (all kinds of genres included) at the French Music Awards ceremony of 1998.

The album is considered to have widely influenced French rap artists and French music industry, opening a new era of success for French rap. - Wiki

“This album is one of the cornerstones of French hip-hop music. Its release was a major act for IAM as they finally found a sound to match the quality of their lyrics, as well as for French hip-hop, confirming the fact that rap has a lot of followers in the Hexagon.

IAM takes the time to raise questions we don't want to hear, and stories we don't want to remember. This album is just hip-hop as its best: quality of the production with skilled lyricists in top form. This would just be one of you first "must-have" purchase if you plan to approach French rap music.” - AllMusic

Item description:




L'École Du Micro D'Argent


Warner Music France


3 × Vinyl, LP, Album, Limited Edition, Reissue



Release Date:

This reissue: 2015 | Original - 1997


Hip Hop


Conscious, French

Catalog No: