Audio Dope: Busta Rhymes – E.L.E 2: The Wrath of God (iTunes Stream)

8 years after the release of his last album, ‘Year of The Dragon’, Busta Rhymes returns with the sequel to, his 1998 classic ‘Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front’.

The album features guest appearances from Anderson Pakk, Kendrick Lamar, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Mary J. Blige, Rapsody, Rakim, Chris Rock, M.O.P and many, many more!!!

An absolutely stacked album with Busta showing that he hasn’t missed a step after three decades in the game!!!

Stream + Purchase – https://music.apple.com/us/album/extinction-level-event-2-the-wrath-of-god/1537526238?uo=2&partnerId=11&at=1l3vwb5

VIDEO DOPE: Focus The Truth – Northside To Southside (feat. Tony Yayo) (Official Video)

Jamaica Queens, Hip-Hop artist, Focus The Truth teams up with, G-Unit veteran, Tony Yayo for a slice of classic N.Y. Hip-Hop!!!

The dope track, accompanied by an even doper video, is further proof that New York Hip-Hop is on the rise following recent releases from Skyzoo & Pete Rock, Joell Ortiz and, of course, the whole GxFR collective!!!

Anyone that says real Hip-Hop is dead (what is it…2006 still???) obviously isn’t looking very hard when there’s gems like this around!!!

Do yourself a favor and get to searching!!! REAL HIP-HOP IS ALIVE AND WELL!!!

 

On The Line: ‘God’s Son’ – Nas’s True Classic.

Every year Hip-Hop websites, blogs, and other media outlets, celebrate the anniversary of Nas’s debut album ‘Illmatic’, with out fail, due to it’s status as one of the greatest Hip-Hop albums to ever drop! A true classic in the eyes of many critics and fans!!!

Nas’s debut was indeed a phenomenal album featuring top notch production from the likes of Pete Rock, DJ Premier, Q-Tip, and others, as well as truly vivid street tales that almost made you feel you were there at that moment (‘Memory Lane’ being the greatest example)!!!

nastynas

However notice that I don’t personally use the word classic in my description above. ‘Illmatic’ is a great album, no doubt about that, however, in my opinion, it is not Nas’s greatest full length project, oh no, in my personal opinion that title goes to Nas’s sixth album, 2002’s, ‘God’s Son’!!!

I can hear the outcry that I would dare say such a thing about what many have hailed as one of the greatest Hip-Hop albums of all time, however, it just doesn’t do it for me. Maybe it’s because I was only 7 when it dropped, and didn’t listen to it until 2002, (though some people younger than me regard it as the GOAT of Hip-Hop albums so maybe age isn’t the issue) the album, as a whole, just never reached classic status to me. Don’t get me wrong there are some classics on it (‘Life’s A Bitch’, ‘The World is Yours’, ‘Memory Lane’ and ‘It Ain’t Hard To Tell’ spring to mind) but, as a whole, it comes across quite slow, and boring, after multiple listens.

The same is said with Nas’s second, so called ‘classic’, album, ‘Stillmatic’, which resurrected his career, in 2001, thanks to some egging on from Jay-Z. Again some amazing tracks on it (‘2nd Childhood’, ‘Ether’, ‘Got Urself A Gun’ and a couple more) but as a whole it just didn’t hit the mark! Certainly not enough for publications, like The Source, to give it a 5-Mic rating (Jay’s ‘The Blueprint’ was far more superior and cemented his place as one of Hip-Hop’s greatest)!!!

nas-velour-suit

His albums between 1996-1999 always featured dope tracks (‘I Gave You Power’, ‘Hate Me Now’, ‘Nas is Like’ and a few others) but never manifested into anything remotely classic.

Which brings me to the main point, of this article, how is ‘God’s Son’ Nas’s true classic album???

Well, if ‘Stillmatic’ is the album that brought Nas back to life then ‘God’s Son’ is the album that cemented him as one of the greatest of all time!!! Everything on this album was spot on! Production, lyrics, topics, guest appearances, everything just worked, something that none of his previous albums had managed to do!!!

‘God’s Son’, truly, lead the way for the second half of his career. Near perfect albums like ‘Streets Disciple’ ‘Hip-Hop is Dead’, ‘Untitled’ (or, the true title, ‘N****r’), ‘Life is Good’ and ‘NASIR’ (United Elementz Media did declare the, Kanye West produced, album a classic at the time but, to be honest, UEM maybe have been a bit premature with that statement! Solid project just not classic)!!! If the first half of Nas’s career (1994-1999) showed he was a dope MC, who could kill dope concepts on wax, the second half showed the more mature, and personal, side of Nasir Jones. Something that started with ‘God’s Son’!!! A real person, with emotions, and an ambassador for the culture he truly loves. ‘Illmatic’ and ‘Stillmatic’ don’t have that. Just some dope records. Fact!!!

godsson

A classic album, to me, has to provoke emotion, and meaning, something ‘God’s Son’ does! Tell me that ‘Heaven’, ‘Dance’, ‘Last Real N***a Alive’ don’t have emotion! Even tracks like ‘Get Down’, ‘Made You Look’, ‘The Cross’ and ‘Revolutionary Warfare’ make you feel something beyond the standard ‘that shits dope’ justification for classic status!!!

Don’t get it twisted I’m a fan of ‘Illmatic’ and ‘Stillmatic’ but ‘God’s Son’ has a deeper meaning, not just as an album, but to Nas’s growth as an artist and as a person!!!

Also as an added bonus it doesn’t hurt that, also in 2002, Nas dropped, his classic, ‘The Lost Tapes’, compilation album featuring cut tracks from ‘I Am…’ and ‘Stillmatic’!!! ‘The Lost Tapes’ and ‘God’s Son’ in the same year!!! 2002 wasn’t a bad year for Nas at all!!!

Relive ‘God’s Son’ here and let me know if you agree (or disagree) with the above!!!

Nas – ‘God’s Son’ on Spotify

– B-Eazy aka The BlogGOAT

WrestleBiz Classics #2: Sabu in WCW.

 

photo (4)

Back in 1995, without a shadow of a doubt, the most mesmerising figure in Pro Wrestling was Sabu!!! With a body full of scars from years of barbed wire matches in Japan’s FMW promotion, in the early 90’s, and insane high flying abilities made him a must see on the mid-90’s independent scene!!!

A staple of, Philadelphia’s, Extreme Championship Wrestling he was known for his wild man antics and putting people through tables. Sabu was truly unique and one of kind. So how did such an individual, who you could only really see on syndication in New York and Philly at like 2am (unless you were in the UK, where we discovered him in magazines like Pro Wrestling Illustrated, as the internet was extremely limited back in those days) end up under the same banner as Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Randy Savage and Sting competing on a national platform for Ted Turner’s, big money, World Championship Wrestling? Simple, WCW president, Eric Bischoff needed fresh talent to provide something different for WCW’s new weekly programme ‘Nitro’, on Turner’s TNT network, to compete with the World Wrestling Federation (now known as WWE) and Sabu was certainly different and what they needed to stand out!!!

Just to point out Sabu never jumped from ECW to WCW he actually left ECW for New Japan, earlier in the year, and came along as a part of the WCW/NJPW talent exchange in ’95.

Sabu had some amazing matches against Alex Wright (a great match that we previously covered on our first WrestleBiz Classics post last year), Disco Inferno and, future ECW World champion, Jerry Lynn, Mr. J.L (twice). He even got a pay-per-view match with J.L at the 1995 ‘Halloween Havoc’ event which saw his uncle, The Original Sheik, throw a fireball in J.L’s face (a real no no in mid-90’s WCW).

Unfortunately the Sabu/WCW relationship lasted only a few months as he was pretty very high risk in the ring and breaking tables wasn’t really something a mid-90’s WCW, where goofy gimmicks and PG content ruled the roost, (keep in mind at ‘HH ’95’ the company introduced the world to The Yeti! Enough said!) we’re looking to push. So by the November he was back putting people through tables at the ECW Arena!!!

It’s a shame as we reckon, had he stayed through to ’96, he could of had a decent reign as Cruiserweight champion, some insane matches with the luchadores and some classics against the likes of Chris Benoit and Eddie Guerrero but there were tables that needed breaking in Philly (courtesy of a somersault or two of course) and Sabu was the man for the job!!!

Note: Sabu did eventually get back on a national platform thanks to ECW’s working relationship with WWF in 1997. He had the privilege of falling off the old RAW sign on to Team Taz, on his debut, then later on facing off with Flash Funk (aka 2 Cold Scorpio) where he attempted to put him, you guessed it, through a table! We salute you Sabu!!!

Stanza Divan – Poetry in Motion (Stream + Download)

photo

Ok, ok, we know we’re late with this one but, as they say, it’s better late than never!!!

Now we got that out the way let’s talk about, Leicester’s, Stanza Divan who, in late November, finally dropped his loooooong awaited project, ‘Poetry in Motion’, which is an absolutely phenomenal tape that was well worth the wait!!!

A dope mix of braggadocio and conscious bars over some pure hip-hop instrumentals (hearing him murder Mobb Deep and Dr. Dre beats is amazing)! A masterclass in how to spit and drop clever, witty and intelligent rhymes!

In our opinion this was one of 2018’s best releases and exactly what the UK scene needed going into 2019 (Charlie, Tiffany, Westwood ARE YOU LISTENING?)!

We said it here…A CERTIFIED UK HIP-HOP CLASSIC… AND THAT AIN’T NO BULLSHIT!

Highlights – ‘You Should Know’, ‘Slept On’, ‘Let It Breathe’ (however the whole tape is a highlight).

Stream + download here – Stanza Divan – Poetry in Motion (Stream + Download)

Apollo Brown & Joell Ortiz – Mona Lisa (iTunes Stream + Purchase)

monalisa

This may just be 2018’s album of the year! YES, WE SAID IT!!!

Apollo’s production is beautiful, hypnotic, soulful, and just plain and simply, Hip-Hop!!!

Joell’s bars leaving you strongly reconsidering your Top 5 DOA as he drops gem after gem in the booth!

Joell is an open book on this project and some of his words are extremely honest and touching (‘Reflections’, ‘Grace of God’, ‘That Place’).

Crazy how this man has been so strongly overlooked despite having deals with Aftermath and Shady in the past?!?!?

A truly phenomenal project that I am 100% happy to certify an AUDIO DOPE CLASSIC!!!

Stream + purchase here – Apollo Brown & Joell Ortiz – Mona Lisa (iTunes Stream + Purchase)

Westside Gunn – Supreme Blientele aka Chris Benoit aka God Is The Greatest (iTunes Stream + Purchase)

IMG_2730

The long awaited follow up to WSG’s ‘FLYGOD’ has FINALLY arrived!

Featuring a host of big name producers including Pete Rock, The Alchemist, 9th Wonder, Harry Fraud and, Griselda’s in house producer, Daringer as well a guest appearances from legends such as Busta Rhymes, Jadakiss and Elzhi!!!

This album is amazing and is highly recommended for fans of that raw, street based, Hip-Hop!

Highlights – ‘GODS Don’t Bleed’, ‘Brossface Brippler’ and ‘Amherst Station’ (like most albums shared on here theirs plenty of highlights on this one!).

Stream + Purchase here – Westside Gunn – Supreme Blientele aka Chris Benoit aka God Is The Greatest (iTunes Stream + Purchase)

Nas – Nasir (iTunes Stream + Purchase)

IMG_2731

Nas album done!!! After making the world wait he finally dropped his long awaited, Kanye West produced, follow up to 2012’s amazing ‘Life is Good’! Question is was is worth the wait? The answer is DEFINITELY!!!

This 7 track project is a classic! Yes I said classic! Lyrically Nas is just as sharp as ever and Kanye (after his pretty poor ‘Ye’ album) has proven his worth as one of the greatest producers of all time!!!

Pure soul all the way through! This album can only be described as beautiful! I would highly recommend grabbing a copy!

As for highlights the whole thing is a highlight! This is to be listened to all the way through!!!

Stream + Purchase – Nas – Nasir (iTunes Stream + Purchase)