KOOL G RAP – RETURN OF THE DON LP Review

By SUNEZ #SkillastratorLO  The #PowerWrite

What walls may I hang the wanted poster?

Son, that trap there is at least a good 16 bars deep to climb out of.  Random tremors of tinny punched bass fortify the corniest caves leading into hellish harems.   

Being in there, the more paper you talk, take and toss the more at a loss for words they are.

What walls may I hang?

The trap goes farther and farther and the hookah vapors make every party of 4 a thousand deeper, the works of a martyr magician, meaningless magnificence the masses mutter.  

Timed by fifteen, in sets of sex tiers, junkies are only the layman’s term. You are a trans-cannibal, consume ye of they, those, them and thee. The murderers of your own condemnation, an endless cycle of glorifying grossness.

What walls may?

They say that when the mumblers die in the trap they hear their Don G. A lisped sound of abnormal fluidity, as if words were meant to be manufactured for aural flight. On a Kool day, silhouettes of bloodied snowflakes rapped in breaks crescendo the next victim in warning. That warring, in words, shows and deeds as MC is an art for the living. The living Don’s return..

Tearing down statues and blasting busts we kill the dead that fuel the living by decay. So after landsliding Mt. Rushmore we place our questions of the core of the MC Arts as an exercise. Skillastrator here has a square core based on those that are most important in pioneering the elevations of content, technique and stylistics that become the best the music ever offered.  So Rakim Allah, KRS-One, Chuck D and the Don Kool G Rap are carved into the walls.  

KGR, amidst the other three and other contemporary legends as Big Daddy Kane, is really the one to push verbal dexterity as much as anyone.  All the whilst, he goes to the other extremes that KRS’s incredible concept LPs of enlightenment geared edutainment and Chuck’s revolutionary baritone that codified the daily warrior context for we Black and Brown.  Without Kool G Rap blended abnormal techniques with an extreme gangsta persona to deliver the worst real life stories, angered fantasies and savage sentiments then Hip Hop doesn’t have the complete potential for absolute honesty and unabashed freedom it has.  We may only notice the exploitation of it all but the context of Hip Hop’s content is given substance by the diverse MC that delves far in all their hells lived and heavens imagined, created and solutioned toward.

Return of the Don is a simple LP to understand.  It isn’t a complete palette of all of KGR’s abilities as 1992’s Live and Let Die, the stylistic enhancement of persona as the gangsta pimp drawl he fashions with matching tales through 2011’s Riches, Royalty and Respect,  the sleeper LP of his catalog.  It also isn’t the  addictive lyrical exercise that 1995’s 4,5,6 was due to the pauses, breaks and timeouts injected by so many guest MCs.  A return in 2017 is extremely difficult for a pioneer as Kool G Rap because his innovations are so absorbed into Hip Hop.  His techniques are foundational overtly or subtly to legendary MCs after from Raekwon, NaS or the late BIG PUN (#RememberedInPerfection) to the young lyricists of variegated rugged works as Noble Scity Crew’s Zagnif Nori, Starvin B or Meyhem Lauren.  His gangsta mafioso persona is a core sellout wordrobe for #RespectFAKE rappers for the last twenty years whilst also inspiring classic LPs (NaS’ It Was Written) and classics of classics LPs as Raekwon’s Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… So Return of the Don LP strategizes with a hardcore lineup of All Stars, a few legends and up and comers to place G Rap in a context of supremacy that his quality works this decade have not done.

All the featured MCs leave quotables featuring their essence well ill and many shine as Raekwon, AG Da Coroner, Cormega, Conway and the late legend Sean P! (#RememberedInPerfection).  Still, for Skillastrator, it’s a choppy listen because I continue to search for G Rap though it is a pleasant search or wait since the guests are at such a high level.

Born Universal Truth, The Return is about listening to the possibly the most naturally and devastatingly dynamic in the pocket MC that has ever been heard.  So the hesitation monotone he wheels through “Running” where the battle bar concept is so simple yet so incredibly done. The verse starts, “I hurt your feelings buddy//we working with silly money//we playing with silly putty//your nose is still cruddy// pockets is real chubby//sorta like Checker//G ya home wrecka/fuck up your whole sector//and she a bone inspector//you get the chrome heffa//this eat ya dome flesha//I give ya stone pressure//we trying to raise the bread up//my shit’ll raise the dead up//28 days later, zombie bullets ate ya face up…” and ills to its end. Knowledging deeper, he creates a bounce without inflection emphasis using perfect syllable matching. His speed is fast in and slows slightly as we glide into the pocket with him where by the time he is taking us “28 days later” he is speeding extra syllables in and changing the rhyming sound without losing the glide he first initiated. Such a verbally dexterous MC, he also masters the slower flow on “World Is Mine” where he stacks similes at the end of longer couplets.  Many often deride G Rap for the full embrace of the gangsta persona impeding his technical abilities as they were enormous on his 2nd LP, 1990’s Wanted: Dead or Alive. However, as the aforementioned song’s slower cadence is enabled by the sinister audacity or “Rest In Peace,” that inspires him to high chant his bars anthemically.   The amazing aspect of G Rap’s flow is that he can lengthen and shorten bars so well never losing the proper syllable counts for synergy or putting too many consonants that ruin the melody he is achieving.  So when “Capitol Hill” starts out acapella through a crescendo of buzzing bassline and sinister womping, he can set the length of the bar, shorten it to thicken the rhyme then stretch it back out. And he kills shit versing, “Fifty cent puzzling black star/the crack czars/all my niggas driven in black cars/with clap scars/got left bleeding on black tar/from the drug hustlers to the rap stars/real niggas that trap hard…” Throughout each single verse he gets on each song, the gangsta persona is guiding the content and the only goal is to exhibit the wonderful gifts that he has never stopped working on.

Beatwise, Moss can only ruin it and he deserves credit for extending some experiments nicely.  There are the expected hardcore Boom Bap as the 1,2 break with high snares and distant horns of “Running,” the organ racing and skipped break of “Times Up.”  The flute work on the basic light drums of “Out For That Life” or the funk wah wah guitars on the standard generic bump of “World is Mine” don’t catapult them beyond basic quality.  However, the crispy pounding of “Capitol Hill” highlights KGR ill while the hand clap snares, a better flute fluttering and drumrolled percussion punctuates and the thudding rolling drums of “Criminal Outfit” are masterful.  But Moss keeps things tough and “Wise Guys” with its loud drumming that restarts and fights again.  

Ultimately, this LP intends to not fucking over purpose itself or lay a musical score for all posterity.  It is worked well and ill and a legend performs again.  It is all literally another chance to see Jordan shoot in the gym, Baraka write another poem or Whitney sing another song.  Anyone that MCs better than Kool G Rap, an absolute GOAT candidate, is the son that honors him or his partner near or on the Mt. Rushmore he is carved in.  So The Return of the Don merely only needs to be a small jewel to add to the treasure chest of KGR’s catalog.  And motherfuckin #SaLLute it. It is…

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 Allah

#SkillastratorLO #PowerWrite