LORD JESSIAH – GROUNDS OF DETROIT 2: THE WRATH OF GOD LP Review

By SUNEZ #SkillastratorLO #PowerWrite

Seventy seven ideas prevailed,

#ArtOnArt destroy #RespectFAKE,

#ScienceOnMusic an appreciation curriculum

Shot in the dawn early might

in a fortnight by Pelan’s moonlight,

this Soul’s core aims a way…

every day be babies’ day.

Write I born.

In this epoch of the #InvisibleRenaissance, these 2010s, of the treacherous Nigga States Period, Wisemen of ages too young to be seasoned as they were, sounded hell as if they saved the beauty of the last singers and tortured the rhythm out of slave masters’ facades scraping the crude weapons of Touissant’s warriors. Transmuting militancy into minutes at a time, I dare to make visible one of these Wisemen again. At the hopeful escape of my ears trapped in so many snare coffins and my thoughts overrun by the wilted words of weaklings, I impart on the wrath of God’s strike upon sound…

Lord Jessiah has become one of the few producers to amplify the obsession with thickened basslines and punishing drum work.  As an MC, the extended metaphors and the gun barrel battling in struggle scripture have developed further. So much further that on this seminal work, Grounds of Detroit 2; Wrath of God, he is a Boom Bap ambassador to Detroit’s best Hip Hop.  G.O.D. 2 is a three pronged attack work that presents Detroit MC features over one of this era’s most progressive beat creators soundcourts embedded with Jessiah’s consistently increasing word handles.

Detroit, where wars produce special styles to fare with, fills G.O.D. 2 wonderfully with MCs of cut cadence and extremely paced enunciation. From the God Drugs The emcee’s brutality on “Cold Dishes,” the clarity of Loe Louis on “Gun Chariots” to the Jessiah’s family, Rome & Jade Josephine shining on “Suicide Doors” to Fat-Ray styling in the emphasizing on “Cry Later” the spotlight on all things Detroit real on reel is potent.  There are the impeccable highlights as the grime poetry of Wisemen brother Bronze Nazareth, one of the GOAT lyricists of the last ten years, who continues to blend wordplay and word choice in the most unique manners of illness (“I might mind but I still tote/shit, no blind man but I’m still woke traveling a train wreck cloud, my black cloak, never lactose, I get the cream and the bad omens/I’m the Ra in the land of ruins bounce my names off of pyramids til the man’s affluent/They stole my dreams so I took somebody’s too/Shit!/Swim in cement, no other land looming…”).  Or Njeri Earth on “Prize Fighters” whose verbal dexterity layers and drives battle bars in amazing cut phrase clips that extend and shorten back in length effortlessly.

SHA BE x LORD JESSIAH x DARKIM x SUNEZ x DASUN
@ G.O.D. 2 listening session in NYC

These MCs including Jessiah epitomize the change in Hip Hop music that makes this decade of the #InvisibleRenaissance so profound.  The best MCs of this decade are almost deliberately devoid of pop charisma. That is, there isn’t an emphasis on the techniques, respected or #RespectFAKE, complex or simplistic, that overtly place the spotlight on oneself.  It is a decade where the outlandish pitch changes, overemphatic stage antics and addictive chorus hooks that amplified actual MCs as Ol’ Dirty Bastard (#RememberedInPerfection), Busta Rhymes or Red & Meth are present less and less.  Now, the excellence of the works are invisible without an aware multi-listening and the Renaissance is an intense accumulation of the highest precision. As an MC and absolutely as a beatmaker, Jessiah must become an essential artist of this #InvisibleRenaissance.

 

The only annalist of the #InvisibleRenaissance

Grit scripts listened in integrity,

A telling on the told tales

Open them to you so they may not be mistold

With these 26 bristles

Dipped into the colors of my character

Dramatic motions to expose the wushu

Fight for a song, a collective whistle from the wild

Fossilizing the filtered real

That will let it be worn for all times

And tomorrow crates can excavate us out of our own savagery

Jessiah’s obsession is layered versework on The Wrath of God. It may begin with no simply sung choruses but a barrage of multiple bar quick verses that chorus the music (i.e. “These grown people problems/ you little kid gaming/ nice with the aiming/send em off to the caymans/swimming with the fishes/belly up senseless/you better off committing suicide/slit your wrist shit…” – “Suicide Doors”) or just straight bars as 5-Star, Njeri and Jessiah do on “Prize Fighters.”  The greatest improvement with Jessiah is his MCing and within it is his enormous clarity.  All the Wisemen are obsessed with the long game of the verse not the immediate punchline and Jessiah often rushed his best lines.  Surrounded by his Wisemen, some of the greatest slow to mid paced MCs ever, lyricists who let you rewind, read them and rewire in mind’s awe. Jessiah’s pacing, always excitable, has an energy that may run out the booth has accelerated here in calculation.  A calculation that fits him ideally with the supreme and classic works Bronze, the late great Kevlaar 7 (#RememberedInPerfection), Salute da Kidd and Phillie have released.  Even with the fast break Wisemen rhymer Illah Dayz, Jessiah opens the track with a control that adds menace.

Clarity combined with tempo control, Jessiah’s verses glide through metaphors, riding one and letting it bring the next one (“Lorenzo Ben Carson flow surgical with the shotty/no cure for that it’s pathological/ Gifted hands against the blitz/Yo, we running slants/grip the blix under circumstance/life gets viewed through dark lenses/ It all comes to a head straight to the point dirty syringes/ I thread the needle with fisherman’s thread, it’s time to eat…”  – “Prize Fighters”).  This non sequitur fluidity is creative in word choices (“Light penstrokes, I’m heavy hearted…Nightmares from living out dreams woke up hungry/ at the table with thieves but can’t take nothing from me/I’m stingy evading the shots fired from friendlies…” – “Nights At The Roundtable”) and at moments, the cleverness is ill as it ponders purpose from “No time to cower, rest form the weary, pillow talking more fire power/ no days off I never slumbered…” (“Horse Power”) and “Pistol principles, old habits die hard/Bulletproof God Kevlaar 7 living invincible/Black dollars equal liquid assets seeping through ya hands/I’m on a different money making ritual/on some get mind by any means/Islam embedded Malcolm Little/Casisus Clay with a M16…” (“Gun Chariots”) to “Men of honor come once a century/Joy Road, 100 years songs of sorrow/sung soprano/it’s music to the ears but kind of heavy on the eyes…” (“Stress Plates”).  To work G.O.D. 2 as a producer compilation where you MC is a double pressure Jessiah’s clarity, cleverness, tempo and vocal grit strength have all increased.  And yet he still shows even more potential when his wordplay works alliteration and elevated vocal dexterity dynamically (“Punitive prowess that penalize punks persecution/You petrified not pulling one punch/40th law of power: avoid the free lunch/I’m just cooking, pardon my flame…” (“Cry Later”). Jessiah is a strong MC in one of the greatest MC crews ever yet he must be immediately known for the drum work he paints.

 

Justice is a judgment of hearing

The rhythm of crime in the first snare

That will one day equalize in the kicks

Seeds in the high hats everywhere

Thickened basslines curve around the Earth

Wed in the verses, a grooved union.

 

Loud, thick, ever grooving and constantly reigniting the pops, smashes and barreling growls, Lord Jessiah is a special producer.  Often inspired by Pete Rock and DJ Premier, he also has the J Dilla knack for highlighting addictions as the rattling crashes on “Gun Chariots” are noticed listens later after a snare of pure hatred like Black fists on an orange saltine hits through a News at 11 chime doubled and tripled and quadrupled.  That gorgeously pierced horn walking in with the widest hips and the readiest lips on “Suicide Doors” as a handclap snare is toppled by a crunchy cavalcade of bass drum 1, 2’s.  The expert chopping of the beautiful ‘Vibes Is Right’ levying the early horns and barring vocal clips into a menacing burn for “Wrath of God,” literally taking one classic and creating another.  When he enlists X the Detective, X soundclashes a digital disco with a tornado’d B-Boy cipher, key bleeps, “It was you” bursts and bass’d piano pulses through sharp, stunted drums for “Cold Dishes.”

The Wisemen sound is a rugged Blues Bap for the stanzas of the soldiering Black peoples. It’s a score Bronze Nazareth developed off the legend of The RZA and he has extended the depth of the music.  To hear him work noisy soulful cries as “No Friend of Ours” with a clacking chaos of drum work is expected excellence of the camp.  As we scour through G.O.D. 2 and hear the suffocating basslines of “Prize Fighters” or the lo fi skip start breaks in the heavy bassdrums of “Horse Power” or the wild yells, drum roll kicks and bass thumps through DJ Los cuts on “Stress Plates,” we hear Jessiah’s unique direction.  Directed into a cipher of basslines talking and distinct arrangements are all details of supremacy. Production truly is digging: finding the history, exalting it, then amplifying it with one’s own patterns and colors.  An aural painting of honor that places Jessiah in the lineage.

Jessiah has painted himself into the top producers of this era with this third work and second masterpiece in a row. G.O.D.2 is a beat essential with Jessiah’s growing MC talents whilst historically, the inclusion of such skilled, accomplished yet criminally unheralded MCs of Detroit give the LP a special value.

 

Just wrath in writing, the last friendly for the fiery

Revolution’s the weapon to trigger enlightenment

PowerWrite to Skillastrate, the worded element

From the lone Lo Life wearing a home sewn garment

Rudy LO showed me how the 2 L’s double down in peace.

Sunez Allah #SkillastratorLO of the LO LIFES

#LOVEandLOYALTY A #LoLife

The organization of these principles around a counterculture, an expressive arts of creation that uplifts the ideas and thoughts of an oppressed people, is why I’m an honored builder amongst legends, knighted by heroes of Medina (Rakim Supreme Shabazz Allah/Rudy Lo, Thirstin Howl the 3rd, Bonz Malone) to further create in my element as a Hip Hop Writer of #ArtOnArt & #ScienceOnMusic. So the world may find love that locks in with the action of loyalty though they may never find another writer with my kind of grammar…

 

Representing the pillars of:

#KnowledgeOfSelf

#LoveAndLoyalty

#OriginalCreativity

Peace, Sunez

#SkillastratorLO #PowerWrite