Mind Tricks – Legacy of Blood By
Mind Tricks are back with a new studio album hardly a year after their
impressive “Visions of Ghandi” album, which featured the
likes of Kool G Rap, Tragedy Khadafi, and Ras Kass. My biggest complaint
about “Visions of Ghandi” were the numerous guest appearances.
I wanted to see if Vinnie Paz could hold it down by himself. Either
Vinnie Paz agreed with me, or his budget was cut, but there are only
three guest appearances here, the GZA, Sean Price, and Killah Priest.
Stoupe stepped up his production game for the Pazmanian Devil, as he
continues to drop the same rhymes about the Muslim faith, violence,
The lead single, “On the Eve of Darkness,” has a menacing
violin sound that complements the styles of Paz and GZA perfectly. The
beat sounds as though it could have been made by the Genius. The beat
reminds me of “Animal Rap,” the lead single from the last
album. GZA and Paz go well together on this track, but “The Worst”
has Vinnie Paz spitting some of his best lyrics.
Sean Price comes through on “Beyond the Gates of Pain” to
murder his verse. An interesting side note on this track is how Paz
disses gays and calls for more EPMD in the same verse (everyone’s
heard the rumors about Erick Sermon). On “Causes of the Bleeding”
Paz vows to “fight against the army with a rock in my hand.”
Probably my favorite song is “Before the Great Collapse”
where Vinnie Paz writes an open letter to his mother as if he were dead.
I thought this was the most creative and deep track on the album.
Stoupe’s production stepped up a lot for this album. He still
doesn’t have that signature sound, which is a good thing. His
favorite samples seem to come from classical music and Spanish music.
There are no really strong hooks on here. I think that will be one of
the biggest obstacles JMT faces in getting radio play, as well as having
commercial appeal, which they definitely lack. Interludes are very heavy
on this album, as there are 6 interludes and an intro, which cut the
actual songs down to 12. JMT fans will probably not be disappointed,
but after their fourth official album, we are left to question, what
more can they say? That will be the challenge for the next one.