Masta Killah - Selling My Soul (Review)

Masta Killah - Selling My Soul (2012)

I have been waiting on Masta Killah's third solo album "Loyalty is Royalty" for a few years now. In that time, various singles off of it were released or leaked and the hype was starting to build. Then suddenly, Masta Killah announces he will be dropping an album entitled "Selling My Soul" and that "Loyalty is Royalty" will come out some time after that. Released back in late 2012, "Selling My Soul" features some of the tracks and singles that were meant for "Loyalty is Royalty", but is its own album. How does it sound? Click to find out.

1) Skit - As you know, I hate pointless skits to start off an album. Next.

2) Intro - Masta Killah spits lyrics from other Wu-Tang Clan members over a breezy Allah Mathematics beat that seems like its shrouded in smoke itself. We've all heard these lyrics plenty of times and Masta Killah brings nothing new to them. Interesting way to start the album. Its not bad, I just don't really see the point.

3) Soul & Substance - Produced by someone named Meditate Soul, this is a laid back, guitar driven instrumental that is similar in tempo to the Intro track. I kinda like this one. Masta Killah must be one of the most laid-back rappers ever (although Cheo H Coker might not think so).

4) R U Listening - Inspectah Deck has produced a few great tracks in the past (my favorite being "Beneath The Surface"), but his track record is far from perfect. I really like this beat, however, so that's a plus. Its basically just a dusty, looped soul sample, somewhat reminiscent of a Rza production. Masta Killah sounds fine over this, just don't expect any Glaciers of Ice or Mystery of Chessboxin type verses on here.

5) Things Just Ain't The Same - Another looped soul sample, this time by P.F. Cuttin'. The beat is nice, and Masta Killah is in "thowback" mode spitting about how hip-hop was back in the day. This was one of the tracks that was supposed to end up on "Loyalty is Royalty", but ended up here instead. Not bad, but I'm still waiting for some fire from Masta Killah.

6) Part 2 (featuring Kurupt) - Its Kurupt's turn to rap old Death Row lyrics over the same beat from the Intro. Very random. I guess they are just trying to pay homage to the classics, but its an odd way of doing so. Maybe if the Intro and Part 2 were combined into one song.

7) Cali Sun (featuring Kurupt) - This song, produced Dash, has a heavy West Coast influence but is just lacking something and seems very amateurish. Masta Killah seems out of his element on this and Kurupt sounds like he is half asleep. Bleh.

8) What U See - I'm not sure I consider this Koolade beat to be "soulful" like the album title suggests, but its not bad. The chorus outstays its welcome as its pretty much Masta Killah repeating "what you see is what you get" over and over. Eh, not horrible, but not great either.

9) Food - Ok, I really like this track. 9th Wonder comes with a very soulful vocal loop and Masta Killah sounds great over it. The chorus of "MCs wonder, how me and 9th Wonder, make the lady's shake it in the club like thunder" seems a bit out of place on a Masta Killa song, but whatever. This is one of my favorite tracks on the album.

10) Skit - Very annoying.

11) All Natural - Another Allah Mathematics beat. This one is much better than the Intro beat and is probably one of my favorite songs on the album. Masta Killah raps about how he shops at health food stores and such.

12) Wise Words - Masta Killah talks for 3 minutes over the same sample as 2Pac's "Keep Ya Head Up." I'll probably never listen to this again.

13) Divine Glory - Self produced by Masta Killah, this song samples Blue Magics "Secret Lover." Its a love track and Masta Killah sounds ok, but to me the end result is quite bad.

14) Skit - Pointless. Next.

15) Dirty Soul (featuring ODB) - I got all excited when I read the tracklist online and saw an Ol Dirty Bastard feature, but this is not an unreleased verse by Osirus himself. Instead we get Masta Killah paying homage to ODB by spitting one of his old verses, similar to the Intro, after 2 and a half minutes of him talking about his favorite soul singers. I applaud the effort, but the execution is lacking. The beat, by Blackinati, isn't half bad though.

16) Some tracklistings had a 16th track entitled "Wisdom". This sparked my interest, so I hunted around online and finally found the song. Its just another skit. Bleh.

"Selling My Soul" sounds like it was pieced together from various sources and was rushed out the door for some reason. I'm not entirely sure why, since "Loyalty is Royalty" was sounding like it was coming along just fine via the singles that were released from it. Some of those singles end up here and are definite highlights on the album. I'm going to rate the album a

2.5 / 5

due to it having too many weak tracks and way too many skits.

I'd only recommend this album to people who are die hard Masta Killah fans or Wu-Tang collectors. There are a few great tracks on here, but there are a bunch of bad ones as well.


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