Killah Priest – “Heavy Mental” review

Killah Priest is a member of the Wu-Tang Killa Bee subgroup Sunz of Man as well as a member of the California/New York supergroup The HRSMN. He was also contested to become the 9th member of the almighty Wu-Tang Clan, but Masta Killa ended up earning that title. However, since then Killah Priest has been able to solidify himself as the most visible Wu-Tang affiliate. He had a guest verse on the track “4th Chamber” off of GZA’s masterpiece of a sophomore effort Liquid Swords & he even had a a whole track to himself on that album with it’s closer “B.I.B.L.E. (Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth)”. And while it was as astonishing as the rest of that album, I wasn’t too surprised to see that particular track reappear near the end of his solo debut over here. Aside from that, there are plenty of other highlights such as the opener “1 Step” which beautifully sampled “I Forgot to be Your Lover” by William Bell just 4 years before The Alchemist did on the classic Dilated Peoples track “Worst Comes to Worst”, the religious “Blessed Are Those” although I think the production on this track is so plain, the GZA/Inspectah Deck featured “Cross My Heart”, the perfectly titled “Fake MCs” which has a nice piano loop throughout, “Tai Chi” which also has a nice piano loop throughout & it’s the closest thing to a Sunz of Man track on here, the eerie “High Explosives” & the jazzy wisdom filled “Information”. My only real issue with this album is that I sometimes wish that the Wu’s de facto leader RZA produced a couple tracks on here. I mean I’m fine with Priest dropping knowledge over production from 4th Disciple of Killarmy or True Master, but I think it would’ve been PERFECT to hear some production input from The Abbot. However, I would finally get what I wanted a few years ago on Priest’s 10th album The Psychic World of Walter Reed, which I personally consider to be my 2nd favorite Priest album. Aside from that this is Priest’s most focused, intelligent, well produced & well executed solo effort to date as well as my favorite album to come from a Wu-Tang affiliated artist or group

Score: 4.5/5

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