Album: 12 Reasons To Die
Artist: Ghostface Killah & Adrian Younge
Release Date: March 26, 2013
I almost exclusively review new music but I want to start posting review type material for past albums as well so we'll start here. "12 Reasons To Die" is an album that everybody seems to enjoy but I never see it talked about or discussed. The cinematic nature of this descriptive concept crime tale deserves some clout. Adrian Younge does an unbelievable job setting the scene with dramatic extravagant compositions. The instrumentals can vary from luxurious and grandiose to cold blooded and vengeful depending on where you are in the plot. And that's where are primary character and protagonist Ghostface Killah comes in. The storyline derives influence from 1960's Italian mafia films and we start our story with a young Tony Starks running game with the De Lucas crime family. He's recruited to be a street wise soldier, a role GFK is very comfortable in, but he soon grows tired of his position on the totem pole. He splits from the De Lucas to form his own rival group which is where we see his fellow Wu Tang clansmen enter the picture. Tony Starks quickly grows over confident in his newfound status as a kingpin which leads to him falling for a set up chick. As Tony is roped in and murdered by the De Lucas the entire plot is revealed to us. He is melted down into 12 records as memorabilia for the 12 mafia heads and in this reincarnated vinyl form he seeks his revenge as the Ghostface Killah. The last few tracks is vintage Wu Tang and a literal murder spree. Ferociously gritty lyrics dominate each scene and paint a lifelike picture. I love that every single verse on here contributes to the evolution of the plot with different characters being introduced throughout. If you like your hip hop to read like a thriller film this is for you. Masta Killa even referred to the lead mind on this effort as RZA Tarantino. Classic Ghostface, rich production value, and an ever intriguing script that I highly recommend.
Overall Rating: 8.5-9/10