This is the 8th full-length solo LP from Philadelphia underground veteran Vinnie Paz. Breaking out as the MC of Jedi Mind Tricks & the leader of the Army of the Pharaohs collective, he put out his first 2 solo albums Season of the Assassin & God of the Serengeti in 2010 & 2012 respectively until returned in 2016 with The Cornerstone of the Corner Store. The Pain Collector would become my favorite of his since his first 2 but since as above so below, Paz has been staying consistent by delivering a new solo effort every year. And to commemorate the 1-year anniversary of Tortured in the Name of God’s Unconditional Love, the Verbal Hologram is assuring that All Are Guests in the House of God.
“Drug Church” is an ominously drumless start to the album calling out those who be sleeping while the feds are watching them whereas “Oil Drums” featuring Freeway works in a soulful boom bap instrumental from Leaf Dog talking about taking them to the ocean to throw them overboard. “Koresh Babylon” fuses this beautiful loop with kicks & snares provided by Giallo Point trying to get away from those who be tailing Paz leading into “The Jungle’s a Shapeshifter” featuring Trxstworthy finding the 2 joining forces for a rugged hardcore anthem.
The lead single “2000 Shot Barrage (Return of Hell’s Messenger)” produced by C-Lance is an incredibly raw sequel to a highlight off The Thief & The Fallen just before the flute/boom bap hybrid “Nero Caesar” featuring Smif-n-Wessun that Farma laced continuing to get on their battle rap shit. Meanwhile, the suspenseful atmosphere that Vic Grimes brings to “Impaler” is absolutely perfect advising not to play with these kids prior to “Swift Chancellor” experimenting with trap a bit talking about his squad really gunning out here.
“Slow March to the Burial” featuring Ransom brings the 2 wordsmiths together over dusty kicks & snares spitting more hardcore lyricism, but then “Peace Means Violence” featuring Saigon begins the 2nd leg of All Are Guests in the House of God with an eerie boom bap beat from Stu Bangas getting murderous. “Terry Funk Ain’t Wear a Mouthpiece” continues to offer offering that pain over more kicks & snares that is until “Yemeni Telephone Number” featuring the Timbo King ruggedly talking about the aura of hell-gazers.
Moving on from there, “Balla Ejj” mixes pianos with a foreign vocal sample comparing himself to that of a craftsmen while “Beausoleil Wiretaps” by the Heavy Metal Kings featuring Lord Goat sees the trio over a Middle Eastern/boom bap blend spitting the aggressive lyricism that all 3 of them have made themselves known for. “Praise the Witch” featuring Young Zee grimily telling those that if they’re gonna do something, they should do it properly & Young Bangas whips up the best trap instrumental on the album with “La Pulga” talking about Vinnie meaning what he says.
“Valentino Dueling Gloves” weaves a flute into the fold admitting that there ain’t a whole lot of time here & that nobody else is moving as long as the Ikon’s still around, but “Murder is an Artform” featuring the late Blacastan & Tha God Fahim officially ends the LP with the 3 over a somber boom bap instrumental continuing to deliver further down the murderous rabbit hole.
Odrama vin Laden never disappoints as his solo output accompanied by the number of group material he has in his back pocket are generally consistent within the underground & hip hop heads at large. Needless to say: I like All Are Guests in the House of God more than the one we got almost a year to the day ago in Tortured in the Name of God’s Unconditional Love. There are some occasional trap elements to the production even though it’s grounded in his traditional hardcore boom bap sound & a bit less misses with the guest performances.