After triumphantly returning to form in 2015 with The Thief & The Fallen, Philadelphia underground legends Jedi Mind Tricks are now coming out of the blue with their 9th full-length album.
After a 96 second intro, we go into the first song “San La Muerte”. Here, MC Vinnie Paz talks about how he isn’t fucking with anyone over a sinister Stoupe the Enemy of Mankind instrumental. The track “Rashindun Caliphate” sees Vinnie talking to his haters over an instrumental with an eerie atmosphere to it while the song “Freshco & Miz” talks about their longevity over a boom bap beat with some jazzy horns. The track “When the Body Goes Cold” gets confrontational over a gloomy boom bap beat while the song “What She Left Behind” vividly describes an abusive relationship over an alluring soul sample & the drums are going off like Desert Eagles. Honestly, I think it’s the most disturbing JMT song I’ve ever listened to
The track “Death Toll Rising” talks about ghetto life over a boom bap beat with a pretty Latin vocal sample & after the “Shed the Skin to Receive the World” interlude, we go into the song “Certified Dope”. Here, Pazzy spits that gun-talk over an instrumental that doesn’t really suit the vibe to me. The track “Hell’s Henchman” talks about snakes over an instrumental with some intense strings while the song “God Forsaken” is filled with murder bars over an instrumental that perfectly fits into a final battle. The track “Legacy of the Prophet” with Sean Price talks about their place in hip hop & while it is hard, I feel like we’ve heard Sean on so many JMT tracks at this point.
After the “Void Ritual” interlude, we go into the song “You Have 1 Devil but 5 Angels”. Here, Paz spits some battle bars over some bass & keyboards while DJ Kwestion’s scratch hook suits the vibe fantastically. The track “Marciano’s Reign” intellectually talks about overcoming the negatives over an orchestral instrumental while the song “Torture Chamber” with CZARFACE goes back to the battle bar tip over a rap rock beat. The track “The Letter Concerning the Intellect” pretty much speaks for itself over a gloomy guitar & a soul sample on the hook while the final song “Making a Killing” talks about the meat industry a beautiful piano instrumental before the album finishes with a 1-minute instrumental.
While I prefer their last album a lot more, this is still great. Vinnie Paz’s lyricism has gotten sharper with age & Stoupe’s production compliments him just as much, but there were too many interludes for me