Rashad Unique presents
Unique Heat 3: Clearer Understanding
Hosted by Saladin Quanaah Allah
Unique Heat/Rhythm Box Music
Release date: August 7th 2015
I just want to take this time to give praises and recognition to the man called Rashad Unique, who has been instrumental of me finding my calling as a Hip Hop journalist.
This review is a long time coming, maybe too long, and this is my way of giving back to the God who helped manifest my career, and now while I truly understand (pun intended) that, it is only right that I bring you the review of the third installment of the Unique Heat saga.
20 tracks of uncut, unedited righteous grown man’s hip hop from some of the best emcees from the Allah School In Mecca hosted by the God Saladin Quanaah Allah, who provides narration throughout the project. He kicks off by putting up his ‘Modulated Shields’. Great start to the album… the pace flows into the holy sounding ‘Boom Baptizm by Kalik Scientific who as Saladin suggests, really becomes one with the beat as it progresses.
The epic feel of this album continues into ‘Yakub’ by Kasim Allah, warning our people of the ‘race of devils’ and their heinous acts of tricknology. It’s one of those tracks that you could imagine a visual being made to, only to be met by trolls who have no clear understanding of what the message entails.
Golden Era Hip Hop fans will rejoice as Rashad Sun brings back that essence in ‘Self Saviour’. Halfway through the beat flips around to more haunting sonics and Rashad takes full potential of his 7 1/2 ounces of his dome. Keeping in that same mindframe, Build Destroy and Master K-Bar lets purists know that ‘Message Sent’. The backdrop is so reminiscent of that Gang Starr sound that we all know and love.
The video above is the original, but insert 9th Wonder sound bite here – “THIS IS THE REMIX!” Lord Jessiah comes back through with the track – Blitzkrieg featuring Drugs ThEmCee and All-Wise. The relentless head banging feel of this project shows no sign of slowing down. By now a typical Hip Hop release will have featured a R&B radio type record. Not Unique Heat 3. Then Japreme Magnetic lets people know that when Dealing With Us 5%ers, be prepared to deal with the gritty drum sounds that goes with it. Unless that was Japreme’s intention, his building on the track might be slightly overpowered by the said drums…
…but Nowaah The Flood wants to go back further than Hip Hop’s Golden Age. Try 1960. Think of what our people had dreamed to accomplish and today we are not carrying out those dreams to the letter. But it’s Mullah Don aka Magnetic who brings us back to present day while keeping his rhymes ‘Fresh’.
Keeping with the album’s concept, Nato Caliph & Power God Allah breaks down who they are as the ‘Original Almighty’ and what it means to be a 5%: ‘Many come, few are chosen/knowledge comes before wise words are spoken/I learned that from the father who broke from Elijah/1964 when he produced the products…’
The next track that follows is designed to destroy all those memes people post on their timelines stating ‘rap was better before’… how about now? That’s the question posed by Born Allah, Erule & Planet Asia when they drop that ‘Classic’. If there is one thing I hate, is those said memes. This track erases that ignorance as they cleverly use scratches from other tunes and most notably from Nas’ Ether ‘you wanna be on every last one of my classics’…
In 2013, Kasim Allah & Brand Nubian went out and exposed the ‘Jive Pretenders’, but this is the remix… one of many highlights on the album about people now throwing the mighty 7 chain around their neck hoping to get recognition and props with no evidence of the real teachings. Eyebrows were indeed raised when this man pictured right rocked the chain recently despite blatant allegations about him. Is he really down with the 5%? Only he knows, and the jury is still out there for some people, and if he is, why hasn’t he revealed his righteous name by now? If you can’t show & prove, you WILL get found out.
It is only right that Saladin Quanaah Allah tells you to do the Knowledge (1) and Understand (3) why, so fitting for the album’s 13th track, ‘Deserted Blocks’ by Master K Bar. Kicking the tune off quoting Public Enemy’s most prolific album, Master K Bar lets the people know how crooked and twisted the streets are, neighbourhood blocks getting emptier, and the prison system continuing to be packed up.
All Wise & Sol Asar are Beyound Galactic. They are about to show you ‘The Way’ to the uncharted regions into the unknown as explained by the album’s host. This has a zone out, ‘Killah Priest’ like feel along with some good ol’ kung fu samples.
Clay Borne/13Five adds on from what Kasim Allah and Brand Nubian were saying earlier and becomes ‘The Punisher.’ It’s not just those jive pretenders, but those who try to play God and abuse such power and go on like they are above the law.
NYOIL (Kool Kim) has become that artist who doesn’t record as much music as he should, but when he does he always makes a powerful impact. He has become one of the most respected emcees in the game who always connects with his fanbase and communicates with the like-minded in social media. This is a man who is not afraid to express his ‘Culture Freedom’ and encourages his people to do the same.
Wu-Tang trainspotters may remember Njeri Earth from GZA’s ‘1112’ from the Beneath The Surface album. Here she talks to her sisters and her track ‘Food For Thought’ has a double meaning, encouraging the young generation to breast feed their future seeds, as well as giving them knowledge from they’re young. Njeri sees this as a growing a problem with the sisters in America particularly.
Say what you want about Barack Obama, when it comes to race, he’s no different to his fellow brothers when it comes to race and the struggles that go with it. The Almighty Shing Shing Regime bring facts and statistics and empower us to ‘Stand Your Ground’, not just that, they flip the script to those outside their race and ask them how they would feel in those situations.
As the album nears it’s close, the Righteous Ruler wants to take you back to The Genesis. If the good book was written by this man, this is how the book of Genesis would be like as demonstrated here. Just as Saladin Quanaah Allah opened the album, is the same way he will close it with the track entitled ‘Windtalkers’.
This project truly opens minds who takes in all 20 tracks. It might be over people’s heads, but that is exactly the intention. The gods are not dumbing down for anybody and comprising their integrity. Just because I described this as grown man’s hip hop, does not mean young people cannot listen to it. If anything, the project is aimed at the younger generation as the gods reach out to teach one. What these gods do, is speak the truth. It’s up to the listener to take heed of all the messages contained here, however for those who have listened through the first two installments of Unique Heat, they are the ones who will benefit the most by the Gods builds and teachings.
(Michael Grant of RePPiN4U)
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