Monday, August 27, 2012

The hip hop sequel

When it comes to sequels in hip hop, from a critical and a somewhat lesser extent commercial standpoint, some are successful (Raekwon's "Only Built 4 Cuban Linx Pt. II, which I recently deemed as a personal classic), some aren't (Fat Joe's "Jealous One's Still Envy 2"). Usually when a sequel is announced, expectations are sometimes high, depending on the artist and the album that preceded it. When it comes to Raekwon (who all but started the "trend" of everyone wanting to complete a sequel to their most successful work), I knew that even attempting to outdo the original Only Built 4 Cuban Linx in any form was easier said than done, however, Raekwon managed to make a VERY worthy sequel to the original, and it has me anticipating part 3, which was hinted at by Rae on the "Shaolin vs. Wu-Tang" album.

What I want to discuss in this post is not a history of hip hop sequels, but rather the artists who have
announced they were going to release said album and whether I feel they would be able to pull it off or not.

Preceding album- Liquid Swords
Title of announced sequel- Liquid Swords 2: The Return of the Shadowboxer

One of the members of the legendary Wu-Tang Clan, GZA's discography has been mostly decent, especially the underrated album he did with DJ Muggs ("Grandmasters"). "Beneath The Surface" and "Legend of the Liquid Swords" were both good, while "Protools" was a little underwhelming in my opinion. This was announced in the Spring of 2010, and one of the first things I thought of was, "this is good right here". It was also said that RZA would produce the entire album, much like it's predecesor. Since then, it seems that the album itself has been put on the backburner, as an album titled "Dark Matter" has been announced for 2012.

Expectations- Medium. I feel GZA can pull it off, however, in an era where albums are announced and never mentioned again, who knows if this one will see the light of day, especially since another album has been named in its place.

Prededing album- Doe Or Die
Title of announced sequel- Doe Or Die 2

The original Doe Or Die remains AZ's best, and you can almost say he hit his creative peak at that point, although he managed to have a very good, albeit slept on, discography. He surprised me a little when he mentioned plans for a sequel to Doe Or Die, in a good way though!

Expectations- Medium. Nothing has been mentioned about this album in quite some time, but if he can link up with some respectable producers and not try for a commercial sound, AZ can create magic with this sequel.

Preceding album- Extinction Level Event, E.L.E.
Title of announced sequel- E.L.E. 2

Busta did say he would do a sequel to his successful 3rd album, his first on Cash Money Records, but based on what I've heard and read thus far, this project has been all but shelved.

Expectations- Low. I don't have any high expectations of anything that comes out of the Young Money/Cash Money Records label, and that includes Busta's debut on the label, whatever that may be. I'll stick with his pre-YMCMB material.

Preceding album- Muddy Waters
Title of announced sequel- Muddy Waters II: Even Muddier

After the disappointing "Reggie" album, Red has to come back strong on this sequel to the classic "Muddy Waters" album, which is arguably his best. I know he has another tight album left in him.

Expectations- High

 Preceding album- Loso's Way
Title of announced sequel- Loso's Way 2: Rise To Power

After I first listening to "Loso's Way", Fabolous' best album in my opinion, I immediately thought that not only should he do a sequel to it, but it should be named "Loso's Way 2: Rise To Power", and that's exactly what happened. Not only did he announce this album (as well as a collaboration album with Red Cafe, which hasn't been touched on since late last year), but since then Fab has released at least 4-5 mixtapes in between. I feel he's going to release the album at some point, question is when will the release date be.

Expectations- Slightly high

Preceding album- Supreme Clientele
Title of announced sequel- Supreme Clientele

Ghostface, my #5 favorite MC of all time, has one of the most stellar discographies in hip hop, and if there's ever an artist who can make a WORTHY sequel to an original classic, it's him, and it'll be another welcomed addition
to my collection!

Expectations- HIGH

Preceding album- Watch The Throne
Title of announced sequel- Watch The Throne 2

I'm not sure if this will come to fruition or not, considering Jay-Z and Beyonce's newborn (plus the other commitments Jay has), but it was mentioned that it was confirmed a few months ago. The predecesor grew on me SO MUCH, and considering I'm a big fan of both men, my expectations for the sequel are high, very high!

These are the only ones that come to mind, and I'm sure there's more. Not every artist can make a worthy sequel, however, most of the artists I listed above are capable of exceeding expectations, and when/if those sequels drop, expect a post on my blog!!!

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