The Score: Kool G Rap, "Riches, Royalty & Respect"

Tuesday, May 31, 2011 3:00PM

Written by J. Bachelor

THE SCORE
THE SCORE 8/10
Buy Now
  • Riches, Royalty & Respect
  • Kool G. Rap
  • May 31, 2011
Ill Musik 3.5/5
Album Rankings 4/5
Rap Reviews 7.5/10

Back on the block with his first solo release since 2008, veteran rapper Kool G. Rap rolls out the red carpet as Riches, Royalty & Respect lands in stores today.

Considered by many to be hip-hop royalty,G. Rap has been credited by many with influencing several East coast artists such as Nas, Jay-Z, and Capone and Noreaga.

Though Kool G Rap got slapped with the living-legend tag a while ago, ensuring he'd never have to work again outside of guest spots on VH1's Hip Hop Honors shows, the legendary (see, here we go!) Queens rapper is back cutting verses with Riches, Royalty & Respect, his fourth solo album and first since 2002.(Prefix Mag)

Helping keeping things kool was Mobb Deep artist Havoc, who raps alongside G. Rap in the song, American Nightmare.

A nice addition to the album is the track American Nightmare which features Havoc of Mobb Deep. One thing I would like to have seen is more featured artists, Kool G Rap is an iconic figure within the hip hop industry, surely more artists could have jumped on the album like Havoc did? Either way the production on "American Nightmare" is courtesy of Alchemist so we know that we are in for something special right here and that's exactly what we get -- a great collaboration between G Rap, Havoc and Alchemist, a dream track for any head.(I Live Hip Hop)

In a recent interview, Kool G. explained that much of the album's production was kept in the family.

"I got my man Domingo who produced the majority of the tracks. I really didn't do too much work with outside production. Neither the album nor the EP will have producers you've heard of. I wanted the team to be made of guys in the trenches."(YO! Raps Magazine)

Best known for his gritty rhymes and multi-syballic wordplay, Kool G. Rap recently admitted to he has no qualms with being categorized as a living legend.

I'm a very modest and humble dude and not to be cocky or arrogant, but I am very much the sh*t as a legend. It's not just me saying it. If you go back and d*mn near most of the greats have said the same thing. I'm just letting the ones that don't know, know.(SOHH)

Critics find Royalty to be a noble return from one of rap's most influential voices, praising his consistency with wordplay and rhyme schemes; what remains to be seen, is how the streets will greet the rap icon's triumphant return.

Yet like virtually all comebacks from rap's elder statesmen, Riches, Royalty & Respect reveals certain shortcomings that may or may not have been present before but become apparent as rap history advances. Advocates of the arform will argue that Kool G Rap and most of today's successful rap acts are worlds apart artistically. They are absolutely right, but for a Kool G Rap the bar is placed higher than chart positions and numbers of social media followers. (Rap Reviews)
Kool G Rap delivers a dope album here. He did a great job of using beats that fit with his style and delivery. There's a few tracks that could have been better, and "Goin' In" is not for him. I could see he was trying something different and updated but he should drop that one and stick to what works. Some of the songs tend to sound similar to others and only a good few really stand out, but overall it's a good G Rap album to throw on and kick back to.(Ill Muzik)

To purchase Riches, Royalty & Respect, just click here.

Preview tracks from the album below:

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