Saturday, March 16, 2013

Inspectah Deck is 2-for-2 on Premier beats

With all these random Wu-Tang Clan-affiliated mixtapes and albums coming out nonstop, it's hard to ignore their stunning decline as a collective, as well as most members' individual skills and overall appeal to the core fans who once propelled them to hip-hop glory.

Aside from the obvious, glowing talents of Ghostface Killah, Raekwon, and sometimes the RZA, the rest of the Clan is regrettably easily forgettable.

It seemed the same would be true for the once-formidable Inspectah Deck, who spit arguably the greatest 16 of all time.

A year after that masterpiece was released, Deck made what I thought was a surprising appearance on Gang Starr's slept-on Moment of Truth opus, and proceeded to drop another timeless lyrical gem on a classic DJ Premier banger that is widely hailed as that album's best verse, upstaging GURU on his own album.

15 years later, after experiencing some ups-and-downs as a rap soloist apart from the Clan, the Rebel INS has rebounded from his prior two albums (which lacked any real musical direction or sonic cohesion) by collaborating with rap veterans 7L & Esoteric for the CZARFACE album, which I was pleased to see features a Work of Mart, reuniting Deck with Premo for some more magic.

Not only does Premier come with it (as usual), but Deck and his album-mated step up to the plate to create another classic Premier joint.

But it's the beat that really makes the song, as is the case for most Premier tracks. It's dripping with all the hallmarks of classic 90's Premier, complete with strings, horns, bells, crisp cuts and scratched, and simple, yet effective drums. And, of course, the hook is cut up with precise samples scratched to perfection.

Add that to a very young- and hungry-sounding Deck, who, with this album, has reestablished himself as a force to reckoned with in rap's current landscape, and it's almost like it's 1995 aall over again. Almost...

Cop the album!