Raekwon – The Wild (Empire, 2017)
Raekwon brings driven energy to the mic as he raps on classic hip-hop beats. The Wild features an old-school hip-hop vibe with low-key melodies that are easy to vibe to. The album is more concentrated on its lyrical prose rather than club-banging hits, which is refreshing for a hip-hop album nowadays. In “Marvin,” Raekwon pays tribute to legendary singer Marvin Gaye, who passed away on April 1, 1984. He narrates Gaye’s life story—his ups and downs, until the day his father murdered him. “Can’t You See” is a soothing, storytelling track with a nostalgic feel as Raekwon raps about growing up in the 80s to show how much his life has changed since then. The track is about his life journey, and he raps about how any obstacle can be conquered. “My Corner,” featuring Lil Wayne, has playful lyrics and a catchy hook. “Visiting Day” is a soulful song featuring Andra Day’s R&B and jazzy vocals. The song has a sad tone, as Raekwon raps about his homies from his neighbourhood who are still living reckless lives, risking jail time. Overall, The Wild is a genuine and enjoyable hip-hop album.
Trial Track: “Marvin”