Kasim Allah – R.O.T.G.E. (Return Of The God Emcee)

Album Review

Kasim Allah
R.O.T.G.E. (Return Of The God Emcee)
Sandy’s House Entertainment/Right & Exact Entertainment
Release date: March 17th 2017

Us Hip Hop purists feel that the artform is in a stage of Emergency. No fear, the God Kasim Allah from Now Rule (New Rochelle, N.Y.) has come to the rescue & “R.O.T.G.E. (Return Of The God Emcee)” is his panacea.

A blend of social commentary, rhyme skills & attack on the wack elements of Hip Hop are delivered in Kasim’s trademark monotone voice, backed by thumping beats that are all tightly produced & varying in style.

The intro of the opening track “Call Me Dat” at first leaves you thinking “What the f*ck is goin’ on?” “Is this gonna be some trap sh*t?” Naah! Don’t be fooled, it’s a smokescreen. The old school drums soon kick in with a rhyming style that complements.

Kasim’s love for Hip Hop is evident, that’s why he !”Can’t leave rap alone” therefore “The Game Needs Me”. It’s a history lesson of the artform that goes back & forth through the good & the bad of it all over the years. The production is bouncy & swirls around the eardrums Golden Era style. Pure listening pleasure.

The title of the track speaks for itself: “Hip Hop Is Black” let the facts stand clear. Again, more lyrical assessment of the game according to Kasim Allah.

It’s ass whuppin’ time for all the new cats out there, acting the fool with their “Ignorant” nonsense they portray. Short in time length, but straight to the point in it’s indictment against the perpetrators. The same subject matter is continued with an attack on those who act all soft yet thuggish, happily being what the media & record companies want them to be. What’s that? Industry whores who promote negativity. Why? Just to get a chump change paycheck so that the paymasters can get rich off their foolish behavior, not caring about it at all. “F*ck Boi” is an appropriate label for them.

One of the many alarming & disturbing acts of police brutality, leading to yet another death of a Black male is highlighted in “Eric Garner”. On July 17, 2014, Garner died in Staten Island, New York City, after a NYPD officer put him in a chokehold for around 15 to 19 seconds while arresting him. Why did the police kill him? Because he was suspected of selling “loosies” (slang for single cigarettes) from packs without tax stamps, then deemed to be resisting arrest. It’s only right that these incidents are raised & the police are condemned for their brutal behavior.

“Return Of The God Emcee” has Kasim flowing over a triumphant & dramatic fanfare of a music track. This is who I am & what I’m about is the agenda here. The last verse has some sword swinging lyrics & head get severed!

The social commentary touched on in “Eric Garner” is revisited again. The clarion call is to “Fight Back” against injustice, police brutality & racism towards black people. No justice, no peace.

An insight into Kasim’s foundation in Allah’s Five Percent is given on “The Time”. This is followed by retrospect concerning important women in his life & how he would have told the word he loves them, “Anytime”. It’s a smoothed out break from the hardness of the album’s content so far. Don Scribbs provided a melodic sung chorus.

Remaining in the chill out zone, “Foolz Paradise” is a clear contender for summertime jam of 2017. The Meli’sa Morgan sample sets the scene perfectly & gives the track club appeal. Relationships that aren’t right & exact for you can bring you some major emotional stress, nobody needs that. A man needs to know when to bring a romance to an end if that’s the case. Health, wellbeing & being able to say to yourself “I’m Alright” are more important.

Next up is a tribute to “Keita “Wizo” Speed” from Now Rule (New Rochelle N.Y.) who was murdered in early 2014. Along with Don Scribbs, Da God Jaquan, Sadat X & Bullet Baines they ask “Who Was There?” when it happened…

When it comes to negative & fake talk, the message is clear “Save It”. At the same time, many don’t want to adhere to the track’s title when it comes to saving Black lives & decaying neigborhoods. Damn shame.

It’s imperative that we all do the knowledge to those people around us. Nobody is above examination & by doing so you separate the real from the fake. Many claim to be something that they are not & “Who Dat?” covers the topic perfectly. Never take anybody on face value, let them show & prove.

What is shown & proven yet again is Kasim Allah’s ability to command attention with his strong vocals, deliver a message in his music & entertain all at the same time. Return Of The God Emcee? I would say that the God never went away, but he just added on to his impressive back catalog of musical builds.

(Rashad Unique)

Preview the “R.O.T.G.E. (Return Of The God Emcee)” album here

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