The most consistent member of the Wu-Tang Clan, Ghostface Killah, definitely has a KEY ear for production, not to mention a unique yet entertaining way with words. Beginning with his 1996 solo debut, "Ironman", this project for my #5 favorite MC of all time will be very fun to create, as most of his albums will be the tale of two (respectively), as one half you'll get something related to a specific topic, and the other half he may not be talking about anything in particular (which is NOT a knock on him at all), and I'll just chop it up to simple yet effective "tight beats and rhymes" format. And like MOST of the albums I own, this one holds a STRONG nostalgic vibe with me, as I received this as a "semi surprise" Christmas gift in 1996, and I own that same CD too!
I also recall trying to get my friend Andre to trade me this on cassette for Mobb Deep's "Hell On Earth", lol, and this was about a few weeks before I started actively collecting CDs. I had no problem with Mobb's album (which I copped a few weeks later), I just couldn't wait to get this Ghostface joint! With all this being said, let's get to it!
1. Iron Maiden (Featuring Raekwon & Cappadonna)
Wow, Ghostface was on a creative roll at this point in his career, and it showed with this awesome album, basically the best album of 2000. At one point, I went back and forth about whether I liked this album more than his debut, but after thinking about it for so long, I do prefer his debut more over this album, but not by much, respectively. Ghost continued to show what he was capable of, and "Supreme Clientele" is a great example of that. And sadly, this album has been out of print for the longest time, but for those (myself included) who still owns the original version, cherish it forever!
Release date- November 13, 2001
5. Teddy (Skit)
6. Theodore (Featuring Trife and Twiz, Produced by Mathematics)
Overall, while receiving considerable less buzz than "Supreme Clientele", this was an excellent album from Ghost. And speaking of that buzz, that's essentially what led to Ghost's departure from Epic Records to Def Jam, as there was literally no promotion for this album in addition to the lack of buzz. Also, "The Sun" (which featured Slick Rick and Raekwon), "The Watch", and "Good Times" didn't make the album for various reasons (probably sample clearance) and had those songs been in place of "Never Be The Same Again", "Love Session", "Strawberry" and "Walking Through The Darkness", the rating would be different. As it stands, it still receives a solid 4 star rating from me, and it's Ghost's most underrated effort.
When I first played this, I remember liking it A LOT at the time. It's still another excellent album in Ghost's discography, and some may say this is his most underrated album, but I would respectively disagree.
|Two years after "The Pretty Toney Album", Ghost returned with a vengeance with his 5th solo album, and much like his previous releases, I was really anticipating this one, although I didn't cop it until a few months after its release.|
Release date- March 28, 2006
Release date- December 12. 2006
"The Big Doe Rehab"
Release date- September 29, 2009
I always thought Shareefa was kinda underrated. She does her thing on the hook, while Ghost describes his type of girl is not the average. 4 out of 5
I've already spoke on this one. I like it better than the original. Not sure why this was included here considering it was on the "Fishscale" album. 3.5 out of 5
Wow, this album is a LOT better than I initially gave it credit for. True story: this was my second time listening to this since I bought it in late 2009, and it was VERY slept on when it came out. I guess not too many fans were ready for this type of album from Ghost. Be that as it may, this is excellent and I commend Ghostface for trying something different and succeeding. I increase my 3.5 star rating to a solid 4 stars.
|I feel this album was announced out of nowhere, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. After I saw the official tracklist for the album, I put in my pre-order (via bestbuy.com) and anticipated it as much as I did Ghost's other albums.|
This is one apply titled opener right here. Ghost starts it off right, followed by two equally good verses from GZA and Priest. 4 out of 5
After I first played this, my initial rating was 4.5 stars, however, after this revisit, I'll respectively have to knock this down to a solid 4 star rating. I also recall saying it was better than Rae's "Shaolin vs. Wu-Tang" album, and I retract that statement also. It's still Ghost doing what he does best.
Well there you have it. Ghost has one of the most consistent, stellar discographies in hip hop history. Although his later albums were slept on, when it comes to a Ghostface Killah album, you know what to expect and nine times out of ten, you get your money's worth. Here are my rankings:
Ironman (5 stars)
Supreme Clientele (5 stars)
Fishscale (4.5 stars)
The Big Doe Rehab (4.5 stars)
The Pretty Toney Album (4 stars)
Bulletproof Wallets (4 stars)
Apollo Kids (4 stars)
GhostDeini: The Wizard of Poetry (4 stars)
More Fish (3.5 stars)
Oh yeah, one more thing before I close this project. The following three albums have been announced at one point, and hopefully they still see the light of day:
*Twelve Reasons To Die (Release date: 4/16/2013)
*Supreme Clientele Presents.... Blue & Cream: The Wally Era
*Swift and Changeable (collaboration album with MF Doom)
1. Beware of the Stare
This was a decent opener, but compared to the openers on some of his previous albums, it falls a LITTLE short, but still decent for the most part. 3 out of 5
2. Rise of the Black Suits
Somewhat of a ode to the rise, or should I say the continuing rise of "black bosses" in the hip hop world. It's good, but it seems to end right as you're getting into it. 3 out of 5
3. I Declare War (featuring Masta Killa)
Things pick up a bit with this dope track. Masta Killa ALMOST steals the show here, and I can't recall him sounding this inspired in a LONG time. 4 out of 5
4. Blood of the Cobblestones (featuring Inspectah Deck & U-God)
Kind of an odd song title isn't it, lol? Either way, this is still good all around, albeit another short song. Deck doesn't begin this one like you would expect, but he closes it nicely. 3.5 out of 5
5. The Center of Attraction (featuring Cappadonna)
We get the standard "female track", hence the song title. I honestly wasn't too impressed with this one. Not because of the subject matter, but rather a seemingly off beat Ghost and Cappa almost adding nothing to the song. 2.5 out of 5
6. Enemies All Around Me
This apply titled song is a very good "3.5 out of 5" lead in to the next song.
7. An Unexpected Call (The Set Up) featuring Inspectah Deck
Ghostface flexes his tight storytelling skills along with Deck, and again, it's another SHORT song. 4 out of 5
8. The Rise of Ghostface Killah
This was the first song I heard several weeks back. I liked it then, and I still feel the same about it now. Dope stuff. 4 out of 5
9. The Catastrophe (featuring Inspectah Deck and Killa Sin)
Deck shows up again (a very welcomed guest of course), and he blesses this one along with Ghost, but the underrated Killa Sin absolutely steals the show with his verse. 4 out of 5
10. Murder Spree (featuring U-God, Inspectah Deck, Masta Killa & Killa Sin)
A Wu-styled cut here, and I like the way the beat switches during the course of the song. Everyone brings the goods. 4 out of 5
11. The Sure Shot (Parts 1 & 2)
Ghost sure knows how to flow over a nice breakbeat, and this one is no different. 3.5 out of 5
12. 12 Reasons To Die
This instrumental closes the album.
Well, I can say this was a very good album, not a classic or groundbreaking by any means. Ghost is sounding different within recent times, but in no way is that a knock on him. The production by Mr. Younge suits Ghost well, however, the one issue I have with this album is the length of most of the songs, as they seemingly end just as you're getting into them. At this point, I'll go with a very solid 4 stars for this one, and I feel it's one of those albums that may grow on you the more you listen to it. Recommended.