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CD Reviews : Revenge of the 9th Prince
By Richard Henry on May 5, 2010

9th Prince has definitely shown that he can perform along with the best of them. He is one of the founders of the hip hop group Killarmy. 9th Prince’s solo albums such as Granddady Flow and Prince of New York have been steps to a greater goal in his hip hop career. He has been a driving force behind the success of Killarmy which has released a total of three albums and has had favorable rankings in the Billboard 200 chart and R&B/Hip Hop chart. The younger brother of RZA has released Revenge of the 9th Prince that features seventeen tracks and is expected to make an impact.

The second track Raised Cain automatically hits you with a bar, rock sound with the frequent interjecting piano and constant sounding electric guitar. It seems as if the title itself describes the rapper himself, with a reference to the biblical character Cain. The mention of drug pushers, guns, chains and the streets give you a gritty, hard hitting anthem. 9th Prince's flow is convincing and he keeps the rhymes on point that fits the mood of this song. The hook involves a constant reminder of the title. One can imagine this at a party at bar with rough neck types and gangsters. The rapping does match the intensity of the music.

A strong beat that goes down hard is definitely heard in the third track Double 09 that features Beretta 9 and Boy Jones. James Bond is referred to in this song. This song has lots of attitude with a beat that portrays dire circumstances. 9th Prince says that hip hop is his hustle. I imagine that 9th Prince does consider himself as an agent in the hip hop game. This track works very well being the third track because it helps to set the character at the beginning of this lengthy album.

A retro flashback is depicted in the music in the sixth track Young Godz Part II. There is a reference to Granddaddy Flow as well. This track features rapper Shyheim, who begins the track boasting intimidation through his lyrics. The beat keeps on rolling, supporting both rappers as they punch forth their presence. Shyheim mentions competition, his team and allies. His wordplay makes you really listen as you can hear his creativity. 9th Prince also asserts his power and speaks of incarceration and prophecy. This song keeps going as you can't help but to move your head to the beat.

Revolution Music has a fighter quality, a type of determination to take action. There are moments when you think the song is over and then the lyrical flowing continues. In this tenth track, you could imagine a group marching to the beat. There is a message of the future and Planet Asia delivers rhymes that refer to the pyramids of Egypt. I sense that the great origins of the black race is depicted in this song as well as its Biblical origins which existed before America was born. References to Malcom X and Martin Luther King Jr. are also heard.

Shyheim returns again along with William Cooper in the fourteenth track Sour Diesel. When this song begins you hold your breath for the expected heavy hitting beat and rapping. I hear a story about life on the streets and a theme of getting high and cocaine. 9th Prince claims that he wants the spotlight like Lil Wayne Jay-Z, telling you that he belongs in an established place where he is known. The warrior spirit is felt here with some of the subject material about never running from a challenge.

Through this album, I hear an element of a fighting statement being presented here. 9th Prince has done his work in this album with rhymes that bounce, never missing a beat to the heavy sounds that is missing in mainstream hip hop these days. His skills are effortless as one could not say that he is trying to follow in his brother’s footsteps. He is paving his own path, he’s his own man. 9th Prince is trying to say not to sleep on him and that he is back and better than ever. It seems as if he knows his hip hop voice and what he is trying to say. You need to listen to this album if you have not.

Rating: 9.0/10

Revenge of the 9th Prince
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