This is the 18th full-length album Kingston emcee Canibus. Coming up as 1/2 of the duo T.H.E.M. alongside C.I. back in ‘92, they eventually split up a few years later & Bis would blow up in ‘97 after appearing on the LL Cool J song “4, 3, 2, 1” that later resulted in a beef between both parties. He would then go on to make a lengthy yet consistent discography with albums like Rip the Jacker being breathtaking at best & then Mind Control being unlistenable at worst. Now I haven’t covered Bis’ music since Kaiju which was an impressive comeback after & 6 & a half years away, but was thrilled when Johnny Slash was enlisted behind the boards for Self Licking Ice Cream Cone.
“S.L.I.C.C. (Self Licking Ice Cream Cone)” is a haunting yet raw opener to the album with Canibus talking about how y’all can’t absorb the rhymes he records whereas “Slack Jaw Fascists” is a menacing boom bap follow-up telling y’all how he thinks y’all be moving in the rap game. “Every Right Thinking American” has a more chaotic sound to it acknowledging what they call him prior to Hus Kingpin & Rock both tagging along for “The Demi-Side” to ruggedly talk about coming correct on the mic always.
Meanwhile on “Weedabuk”, we have Canibus over some synthesizers letting it be known he don’t give a fuck what people do or so leading into The HRSMN forming like Volton for the gritty “Part 2” to deliver an lyrical onslaught verse after verse after verse after verse. “He, Who Cut Down the Hemp Tree” aggressively belittles those who don’t understand the environment while the song “4 Characters” with Ab-Soul dives into trap turf talking about introducing you to your maker. The penultimate track “Press – PussyPanic Button” returns to the boom bap to get conscious until “Loyalty (Ex Rap Villain, The BKL Dylan)” with Chris Rivers, Kool G Rap & KXNG CROOKED is gully closer about allegiance.
1 Step a Closer to Infinity was just ok to me personally & I hope I don’t come off as disrespectful by saying that, but I actually happened to come away from Self Licking Ice Cream Cone considering it to be better than Kaiju & even amongst Canibus’ best albums to date. Johnny Slash’s production is more consistent than the last one & the bars that the rapping scientist hit much harder.