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In most cases, waiting 14 years to release a sequel to a legendary album would be considered waiting, uh, too long. But in the case of Raekwon the Chef (of the Wu-Tang Clan), the choice to wait almost decade and a half to serve us a follow up to his landmark album Only Built for Cuban Linx wasn't a sign of laziness. Far from it. It just means he was being picky about using right ingredients to produce a bomb hip hop dish. Finally, Only Built for Cuban Linx Pt.II hits stores today, Sep. 8.
When it first hit the streets back in 1995, OBCL was not only Chef's first album, it also broke new ground for the 90s cavalcade of hip hop albums stitched together like dark, gangster novellas instead of a collection of singles. Remember those days, when mainstream hip hop used to release solid ALBUMS that were meant to be listened to from back to front?
At any rate, Raekwon returns to the same format on part two and of course, not without the aide of thw Wu Tang family and other huge artists. In addition to cameos from Slick Rick and Lyfe Jennings, fellow Wu-members Ghostface Killah (featured on most of the album), Method Man and Inspectah Deck are featured all over the album. Epic east coast beats, raw street swagger and cult film Samurai movie clips ensue, creating an album equally,if not more impressive than the first installment.
Standouts include, well, pretty much the whole album but keep an ear out for future classics like "The New Wu", "Pyrex Vision" and "Baggin' Crack" (gotta love these cryptic song titles). Those who were fortunate enough to catch Raekwon's performance at Detroit Bar in Costa Mesa (of all places) last month know that the legendary, Brooklyn-born emcee is still on top of his came, with plenty of tasty flavors to share. Check out the new album Only Built for Cuban Linx Pt. II currently streaming on Chef's Myspace music page.