I'm going to break this review for P.W.O.W.R up into two separate posts since there are 41 tracks spanning the two discs. Also, this will be a kind of "train-of-thought" review since, well, there are 41 track to get through. Click below to read the review for Disc 1. You can read the review for Disc 2 here.
1) The Opening - I was expecting this song to be just a skit and, thankfully, its not. After a short sampled intro, the beat kicks in and is kinda spacey, but gets your head nodding. This almost sounds like a futuristic space launch. Killah Priest keeps with the space theme lyrically and drops some jewels, setting up the foundation for the rest of the album. Nice way to start the album.
2) Shadow Landz - This has a great beat by Jordan River Banks (part of Godz Wrath) and Priest just destroys the track. This is exactly the kind of stuff I want to hear from him. Great beat, great lyrics, mastered sound. His last few albums were lacking in the beats and mastering categories.
3) New Reality - After another brief space themed intro, we jump straight into New Reality. Once again, Jordan River Banks hooks priest up with a stellar beat. The lyrics are typical Priest, which is a great thing. He sounds reinvigorated on this album (not that he ever fell off lyrically, he just seems to have more energy now - maybe its the better beats). Following the title of the track, KP welcomes us to our new reality.
4) Street Thesis - This time Kalisto laces the beat and its really good. Who is this guy? A quick Discogs search showed him as Anton Kallisto and he has production credits on Black August and the Killah Priest and Chief Kamachi collaboration album "Beautiful Minds." Good to know. Anyways, Priest flows effortlessly over the beat and does what he does best - spits street lyrics with religious references and themes.
5) Ein Sof (Paradise) - According to Wikipedia, Ein Sof may be translated as "no end", "unending", "there is no end", or infinite. Priests vivid lyrics follow this theme and can just paint pictures in your mind, which has always been one of his strengths. Another great beat by Jordan River Banks.
6) Developing Story - So we are six tracks in and there hasn't been a single song I haven't liked. Per the title, Priest spits a street story over a Kalisto beat.
7) Brilliantaire - I've loved this song since Priest released the video back sometime in early 2012. The St. Peter beat is amazing and Priest destroys it. Very ill song.
8) The Park - This may be my favorite Kalisto beat on the album. I'm going to have to keep an eye out for more production from him. Anyways, Priests flow on this track is crazy. As the title may lead you to believe, this is a "throwback" type track.
9) Devotion to the Saints (featuring Ghostface Killah and Inspectah Deck) - Ghostface, Deck and Killah Priest over a banging track by Kalisto. Nuff said.
10) Visionz - This was produced by somebody named Purpose. I've never heard of him, but this may be my favorite beat on the album. Very ethereal with a haunting vocal sample and some piano keys. Oh, and Priest destroys this track. Are we seeing a pattern yet?
11) The Winged People - Another St. Peter production somewhat in the vein of Brilliantaire. By this point in my review, all of these tracks are starting to sound the same - great beats, great lyrics. What more can I say? Its Wu-Banger after Wu-Banger. Still, this is one of my favorite tracks.
12) Peace God - Another Godz Wrath production, this time by Ciph Barker. These guys are a perfect fit for Killah Priest. The hook is simple, but catchy - "Peace God, Peace God."
13) The Spell - Woah. Priest goes off on this track. Lyrically this reminds me of "Flaming Swordz" off of the first Sunz of Man album. Priest gets real dark on here. The beat by Ciph Barker is appropriately dark to match the lyrics.
14) Super God - Ok. Fourteen tracks in and we run into the first mediocre track. The Ayatollah beat is passable - not great, but I've heard much worse. Priest comes correct, but the chorus is somewhat annoying. I'm not really a fan of when KP speeds up his voice. Anyways, this is about a half step above being a filler track, just because KP shreds the beat (minus the chorus).
15) Salute - This song is produced by Kalisto, but reminds me of something either Bronze Nazareth or the Wisemen would produce. This is a great thing by the way and I really like the piano sample. Nice bounce-back from Super God.
16) They Say - This mastering on this song is a bit lower than the others, but that beat is crazy. I really, really like this song. Kalisto has become one of my favorite producers over the course of this album review.
17) The Elders Gave Us Aura - Agallah the Don comes with a head-nodding, soulful beat for Priest to spit over. This one is too short and left me wanting more.
18) The Seer, The Poet - Jordan River Banks returns for his first track in quite a while, and its ok. There is this odd noise throughout the beat that sounds like a muffled sample of the original NES Super Mario jumping. I have no other way to explain it. Not a favorite track of mine, although Priest comes correct.
19) Currents of Events - Story-telling track over a Ciph Barker beat. Can't go wrong here.
20) Energy Work (featuring Rza) - This is the first of two Rza beats on the album. Its not bad, by any means, but its not a standout track for me. Rza definitely saved his weird beats for Priest. KP destroys the beat through, as always it seems.
I'm holding back on giving P.W.O.W.R (Disc 1) a 5/5 rating since in order for something to be classic for me, it really needs to stand against the test of time. This album has only been out a few days, but its really good with only 2 tracks out of 20 that I wasn't really feeling. I'm going to roll with
4.5 / 5
I HIGHLY recommend a purchase just for Disc 1 alone. I'll get into the Disc 2 review as soon as I can.