I Can't Call It: Rocness AP - Rock

Posted On Wednesday, September 27, 2017

I remember the first time I heard of Heltah Skeltah. It was back in '93 when I was a sophomore at Morgan State and Black Moon was performing. Since "Bucktown" just dropped they had Smif n Wessun with them but before either of them came out on stage some tall dude with a scar and an ill voice came out to introduce them and he said he was the newest member of the BCC and his name was Rock. And as soon as this dude started spitting it was wrap for me cause dude was nice! We already know Heltah Skeltah's debut album "Nocturnal" was CRAZY but I won't hold you, I wasn't feeling Magnum Force. And after that jawn both Ruck and Rock kinda slipped off my radar. Of course Ruck came back like he was avenging his brother's death as Sean P and KILLED the game but I never heard anything on the level from his PNC Rock. Then one day recently word gets to ear that Rock is finally coming out with a solo album and my first thought is "yeah...about 20 years to late" and brushed it off til I peeped his video for his first single "GW BaG" which was STUPID so maybe, just maybe this album isn't 20 years too late.

The album sets off with "Just Rap" & has Rock breaking down how Sean P used to tell him not to put so much thought into his pen game & "just rap." "Wishin" is STUPID and has Rock telling cats "I will Jamie St. Patrick you..." and "Camp Wu" keeps the part going from Sean P's "Clans & Clicks" with the BCC linking up with Clan once again. "Rumble For Me" takes Rock to the trap and has him pollying with a stripper about "losing his best friend" and it's not as bad as most folk would think. "OG" is reminiscent of some classic Dre production and "Fax Machine" featuring MOP takes us back to the grimy streets of BK. "The Purge" has that knock to it that'll be good money for all of the boom bap brethrens and "Proof" featuring Buckshot has Rock going in "don't say shit to me about bad grammar, shooting the gift...bad santa/green in my jeans like Bruce Banner on the gamma/a week in LA then we skating to Atlanta, see Hardaway in a Hawks jersey, laugh at him...Knicks bitch." "Declaration" featuring Raekwon, Ras Kass & the Last American B Boy has all of them going in over a jazzy sax & drum loop that'll take you back to GangStarr's "The Place Where We Dwell" and "Rockness AP" gives you the entire breakdown on Rock history in the game from the Duck Down situation to the ups and downs of him & Sean P's relationship. "F.A.M." is dope and "Shine Down" is a dope dedication to the fallen soldier & his partner Sean P but my fave banger on the album is the lead single "GW BaG" and has Rock going in over a moody "blacker than midnight on broadway and myrtle" type beat, "top of the morning, ain't nothing better then waking up to top in the morning/nuthin worse then a nigga pushing off your top in the morning." Yeah...Rock STILL got it!

Now, I ain't gonna hold you at the end of the day the album left me wanting a 'lil bit more from the Rock. Now, don't get it twisted, "Rockness AP" is a VERY dope album. The beats are dope, the guests are dope and more important then anything Rock brings it. But maybe my expectation were a 'lil too high for an album that's been 21 years in the making. But again, this is a dope album. And if folk really think about it, supplying us with a dope boom bap album is a hard thing to do 21 years after you first popped on the scene.  Which is why I blew it off at first but at the same time it's one of the main reasons I'm writing this review is so that you won't even come close to making the same mistake I almost made. Cause if boom bap is what you want in your ears, then there's no way you can go wrong with the Rockness Monsta.

4 outta 5 mics

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