The word classic comes to mind when referring to The Clipse commercial debut album "Lord Willin". The duo consisting of brothers No Malice and Pusha-T delivered some of the most buzz worthy lyrics and wickedly intriguing perception on the drug dealer narrative. There was a quiet but noticeable implication about the antisocial behavior of drug dealing that made the content authentic. One of the most surprising admissions of the album is found on "Young Boy" where No Malice and Pusha-T explore the reasoning behind the choice to become hustlers. Pusha T spits, "See, thirteen, studied the gangsta's lean/Low brim, no smile, lotta cash meanwhile/Daddy had the Chrysler Fifth Avey/Hustlers on the blocks cars were aero-dynamie"
In the years to follow "Lord Willin" Clipse released two additional albums and a mix-tape series called "Re-Up Gang". The last official Clipse project, "Til The Casket Drop"; was released in 2009. In 2010 Pusha-T signed with G.O.O.D. Music and promised to release a solo project. Pusha-T released his debut mix-tape "Fear of God" in 2011 and the subsequent follow up Fear of God II which created anticipation for his forthcoming solo project titled "My Name Is My Name".
Pusha-T continues to ride the momentum he's gained from stella performances on G.O.O.D. Music's compilation Cruel Summer with his newest mix-tape "Wraith Of Caine". The 11 track offering is full of everything we've come to expect from Pusha-T. His style and delivery are perhaps what separates him from many of his contemporaries. Check out the Intro where Pusha proudly spits, "You lap top hot/Just internet warm/ Down low for downloads/Don't get caught up in my storm/ F*ck N*gga/ You just Internet porn". There are plenty of rewind worthy moments followed by Pusha's signature ad-lib "Wooo".
"Wraith of Caine" is a solid mix-tape and it only goes to strengthen the need for a solo project from Pusha-T. There are a few misses but it must be taken into consideration that this is a mix-tape and cuts like 'Trust You" will probably not make the final cut on his official debut. "Trust You" is one of the few stale moments because it feels like a forced "love" song instead of a track organic to the scope of the entirety of the project. There is also a West Indian flavor embedded within the framework of this mix-tape that connects it. Many times mix-tapes feel scattered and uneven but having the voice over of a West Indian woman between some of the tracks almost creates the sense of a larger narrative.
Stand out tracks are "Only You Can Tell It" featuring Wale and "I am Forgiven". The soul laden samples in these tracks bring to mind Jay-Z's Blueprint LP. On "I am Forgiven" Pusha-T spits with honesty"This track dictates everything I'm supposed to say/ So have mercy on this soul that I've thrown away/ Although it cliche/ The devil had a hold of me" In these moments we are reminded of why The Clipse were able to take the hustler narrative and make it feel fresh. Wraith Of Caine" isn't a groundbreaking project but more of a reminder of why Pusha-T has been one of the best rappers of his era.
Download Wraith of Caine here @datpiff
-Eric Montgomery @E_MONT_3