By SUNEZ [ #SkillastratorLO #PowerWrite ]
In this alternated reality of Makaveli Track 9, the laws of physics work against the Original man. Where the shortest distance between Blacks is a bullet and whatever’s Brown is surely made to come down. All hypotheses are built on the assumption of guilt and a nigga’s relativity of success is never equal to the energy spent in muck or through the chaos squared, that’s evil equals a mufucka caged and squared. Boxed in experiments where every denying Albert says, ‘I ain’ stain!’ But read the declaration nigga!
But we hold these altered truths to be self hell sent that all my people are unequal. That when in the course of fucking human experiments one people, to cut the bands with another whom have made their world, they will only now know of alien’s rights via Aryan mights. That only the consent of descent is afforded to the Original man by hoverments that waver and wain over the little sunz of man and once, the future Ras of the rebellion.
This Prince of punctuated palaces that passed through verballed vineyards and pissed through halls of grammar, leaving rooms of rhetoric closed and letting attics of Asiatic Black men finally escape with boxes of plus lessons and medallions to offer. The Ras performs with handmade licenses of the careful script with his intellectual property protected by hands, feet and the unmentionable weapons of war. The laws of misphysics were stifled with Kass and they couldn’t keep hell hot with all the soul on ice back again…
I built with the GOAT candidate with a daring to challenge the music as being an honorable presentation of the author himself. And reality was as real as the reels waxed. Ras Kass, the master of sardonic truth via a repositioning of the lenses we’ve been misdealt, the ones we misuse or the ones we never had. This comedic sarcasm powered by warrior ethics fights against the man as much as they dispel our own “Nigsey Land” hopefuls. All endearing through two decades or 300 plus songs that have insights that direct the thesis statements of brothers oppressed everywhere. It’s why ex-felons, college kids and we 5 Percenters respect him and these open proofs of appreciation can almost reparate a brother who has shared billions in intellectual property. On these latest anniversary anthems, Soul on Ice 2, thoughts of creativity are never really owned by him solely, but us all thankfully, as they erect themselves into this massive property. They never play as a wordy mess of self-saluting but as all his best works–unseen insights into crafted song themes, skill set displays into sessions with A-Alike features and daily journal diatribes into clever capsules of quests through the struggle. The major revelation of this double LP, Intellectual Property is that like his last two inspired works (2014’s Blasphemy w/Apollo Brown & 2015’s Breakfast At Banksy’s as Semi-Hendrix), the beat selection is all fittingly powerful.
The double LP is easy for those steeped in #RespectFAKE to write filth to finesse us off from fathoming and just feel it as filler filled failings freely falling. However, the craftwork of IP is constantly hitting the title track’s themes throughout the 20 plus tracks with production that miraculously keep the songs blatantly distinguishable. The former we expect and receive amazingly while the latter is a rarity for even the classic to strong double LP (i.e. Wu Forever to Killah Priest’s The Psychic World Of Walter Reed). On most Ras Kass works you’ll hear tough Boom Bap as the Statik Selektah chimes behind the 1,2 sharp snap drum work as “Promised Land” while the diversity will be 808 filled, hand clap crunched tracks that for we NYC Timb footed ears sounds like post-G-Funk sounds. On IP, the diversity never fails to hold interest because the listener can’t cliché the sounds as diluted versions. There are a wealth of Boom Bap tracks as the Hihache drums fighting through guitar smash and sirens on DJ Lethal’s “Constant Elevation” and the thick drum pops of Snowgoons’ “ExtraOrdinary Vets.” However, head nodders as Soulprofessa’s “And Then” with its Mayfield horns through handclaps over a high conga snare or the thick electric guitar blasts through the calmly paced marched drums on “Goodbye” are so differentiated from each other yet lend to Ras Kass’ pacing with excellent EQing where no lines are drowned out. The drum work stays tough and the sounds remain unique form the whistles traveling in on the snare on DJ King Flow’s “Reverse Engineering,” the melodic bassline through the snare swallowing “PayPal the Feature” by Felony Muzik, which fits as an addendum to Sean Price’s Mic Tyson (Remembered In Perfection P!) while Neff Beatz’ horns and off kilter cymbal snare is refreshingly live on “Bishop.”
All these beats and diversity to allow one of the most unsung GOAT candidates to share some of the harshest and painful understanding of our lives that will be so intriguingly said, cleverly phrased and dynamically pronounced, we’ll listen to it all again and again. And maybe understand. Ras Kass chronicles ghetto hell with comedic observations (“The freshest barbers be Dominicans and [Puerto] Ricans/Latin niggas so hood, they ain’t even Spanish speaking”) and chorus punchlines (“I’m going to NigsneyLand, I know my white people understand/But get for real, don’t say it”) to summative inspiration (“And that’s a carousel, remember it’s free admission/Designed to create self-hate and drug addiction/But the strong survive and sometimes the bad guys win”) on “Hood On Ice.” He then teams with Bun B on “Lose It All” to make a Blues out of the pictorial depicted prior while “Beautiful Mind” powers the inspiration into anthem with a blend of battle raps charged by motivations (“even if you locked up homie/use that time to good use and know you have a Beautiful Mind”) and declarations (“Uncontrollable/uncontainable/ no GMO/free range flows…”). The commentary on “Sycamore Tree” is vicious and triumphant in being right and exact. After dropping the jewel on our negative spiral into niggery “paint(ing) the pic in wide strokes” he builds, “Ain’t no Christians in the Bible Belt/it’s full of racists who want America by themselves,” that dynamically reveals the truth no one says. The cleverness hits peaks on “Bishop” with abnormal amounts of quotables from scornful builds on Black/Brown racism to his criminally underrated/too little known status (“Get a gun, even unarmed police aiming at us/And when Mexicans kill all the white folk blame it on Trump/I’m not the flavor of the month I’m the man in the iron mask/Locked deep in the dungeon discredit me and erase my past/Erase my name off the pyramids ’cause they fear the kid..”) to the hilariously constructed metaphors (“Fuck you spectators/I bet you hate us I’ma come up with something/masturbators on escalators”). The lyricism is contagious as guests as Onyx’ Sticky Fingaz matches up brilliantly on the punchlines (“I never wrote a will/that’s just a dead giveaway” – “Downward Spiral”) to Reks (another great MC with a double LP this year, The Greatest X, that is an athletic showcase) who closes the powerful aforementioned “Sycamore Tree” placing slavery into today’s daily context. The comedy reaches a peak with the satire “Kanye Moment” while the jewels dropped are constantly barraged in the name of Kanye and other interesting perspectives (i.e. “Trade Places,” “WWJD”) or through his natural format of shrewd, never-condescending, poignant observations (i.e. “Promised Land,” “Viral”).
This LP is all wrapped around the magnitude of intellectual property. That soon we’d realize that while the theft of our physical labor is sadly accepted and repeated historically and currently, it really is our thoughts, ideas and innovations that have always been the core resource stolen from the Original people, we Black and Brown enslaved, colonized and ghettoized in these United States. Ras Kass’ reward through these 20 years really has been what he calls “Bardom,” (“The bars is the scars of a billion soldiers marching/Written in margins this bardom, straight outta Carson/The Joker escaped outta Arkham/Bardom is facts, stardom is charged”) that respect and those props for his skill, talents and mind’s third eye in all his MCing. This intellectual property, our genius, here manifested in the person of Ras Kass, is protected by its own mandatory development he shows us is well within our reach. An ideal double long player, the understanding and artistry is recognized more with each listen. Intellectual Property will be one of the works where we can easily note Ras Kass’ GOAT talents from his wordplay, ideal rasped tone, vocal dexterity in tempos and timing, song writing craft, punchline generating, comedic savvy, anthemic power and lyrical complexity. It literally is a log of his own Intellectual Property, aged with Soul on Ice for twenty years.