Onyx - Wakedafucup (Album Review)

Onyx - Wakedafucup (Real Hip-hop)

"Wakedafucup" is the sixth studio album from Queens, NY legends Onyx. The album features guest appearances from Sean Price, A$AP Ferg, Papoose, Cormega, Reks and others and is entirely produced by The Snowgoons. It was released on March 18, 2014 via Mad Money records.

1) Wakedafucup Intro - Short intro which is basically the chorus from the title track.

2) Whut Whut - The first actual track on the album features a sinister piano loop and cinematic horns that lend the instrumental a real dark vibe, which is exactly the sound I look for when listening to Onyx. The beat is blazing and Fredro Starr comes swinging right out the gate, trading off verses with Sticky Fingaz as both emcees spit some of their usual aggressive lyrics. The energy level is real high, making it hard for me to believe it has been ten years since Onyx last dropped an album together. This shit is fire. - 5/5

3) We Don't Fuckin Care (featuring A$AP Ferg and Sean Price) - I believe this was the second single from the album and it's quite ill. The beat, another hard ass piano-based instrumental, is just as dope as the previous track, but a little less dark. Lyrically the track is nice as well, with everyone coming correct over the instrumental. Even A$AP Ferg, who is very hit-or-miss for me, spits a verse good enough to not totally ruin the song. Sean P's verse, however, especially stood out to me and he had me laughing at that
"I pitch rocks with one arm, I'm Jim Abbot"
line. Very dope. - 4/5

4) Hustin Hour (featuring Makem Pay) - Sticky and Fredro team up with Makem Pay as all three emcees kick some street rhymes about their late nights hustlin' over another neck-breaking instrumental. I don't think I've ever heard of Makem Pay, but he sounds pretty good on here and has got me wondering if I need to check out any more of his work. As far as the beat goes, the instrumental is yet another hard ass beat with some ill scratching, dusky synths and energetic drums. So far, so good. - 4/5

5) Buc Bac - The Snowgoons deliver what is probably the darkest beat on the album so far, with a hauntingly chopped up sample, boom-bap drums and deep bass. This shit sounds like something Onyx might have spit over during the "All We Got Iz Us" era, just updated for modern times. I'm definitely not mad at that. Lyrically the track is more of what you should expect from Sticky and Firestarr by now, which is always a good thing if you are into their style. Another dope track. - 4/5

6) The Tunnel (featuring Papoose and Cormega) - But this is even better. This song was just released a few weeks back in promotion of the album and it's fire. The beat is appropriately dark and grimy and everyone just murders the beat, with all four emcees rapping about the legendary NYC nightclub The Tunnel. This one is definitely a banger and is a standout track on the album for me. - 5/5

7) The Realest - Onyx rap about being the realest in the rap industry over another unrelenting Snowgoons instrumental. The beat and rhymes on here are pretty good, but I'm having trouble really getting into this track after the stellar past few songs. Still, not bad. - 3/5

8) Wakedafucup (featuring Dope D.O.D.) - The albums title track was also the first song from the project to get some visuals to go along with it, which ended up being nice way to welcome back Onyx after all these years. The beat on here is full of tension and hostility, which is perfect for Onyx and guests Dope D.O.D. to rap over. I don't know much about Dope D.O.D. outside of them being a Dutch hip-hop collective, but both of the featured emcees sound right at home over the beat and actually spit in a style very similar to Onyx's. Dope shit. - 4/5

9) Dirty Cops (featuring Snak the Ripper) - Onyx and guest Snak the Ripper kick some rhymes about corrupt cops over a somewhat less intense instrumental full of violins, strings and some backing vocals. The beat and rhymes on here are good enough, but this one isn't really standing out to me in the overall scope of the album so far. Oh well. - 3/5

10) Boom!! - Now this is better. The beat on this joint is back on the darker vibe of most of the other instrumentals, with a cinematic sample layered over booming bass and a hard-hitting snare. As expected, both Sticky Fingaz and Fredro sound great over the beat and the Busta Rhymes "Scenario" sample on the chorus definitely adds to the track. I'm feelin' this one. - 4/5

11) Trust No Bitch - The Snowgoons come through with another epic instrumental that sounds like it was taken straight from a movie score and then layered over deep bass. Like on most of the tracks so far, Fredro starts off the track with Sticky following up, as both emcees kick some rhymes using a woman they can't trust as a metaphor for hip-hop. Not bad, but the subject matter has been done plenty of times before. - 3.5/5

12) One 4 Da Team (featuring Reks) - Sticky and Fredro team up with one on my favorite slept-on emcees, Reks, as all three rappers spit some verses about taking one for the team when shit goes down (among other things) over another darker instrumental full of organs and eerie synths. The beat is pretty good and all three emcees do their thing, but this one is just ok for me. - 3.5/5

13) Hammers On Deck - The beat on this track is pretty similar to most the others, with a darker sample layered over hard ass drums, but this time there is some gunfire and explosions thrown in as well. As far as the rhymes go, you can tell exactly what this track is about simply from the title of the song. Not bad. - 3/5

14) Turndafucup - The final song on the album features Fredro and Sticky spitting some hype rhymes over another rowdy instrumental full of frantic violins and deep bass. The song accomplishes its goal of upping the energy to ridiculous levels and the scratching at the end of the song is real ill. Nice way to close out the album. - 4/5

I'm going to rate the album

3.75 / 5

because it starts off real strong, but then fizzles out a bit at the end for me. The Snowgoons deliver as usual with the instrumentals, with many having a real epic, energetic feel to them that perfectly suits Onyx's animated and aggressive style. Despite the lengthy gap of time between Onyx releases, Fredro Starr and Sticky Fingaz both sound just about the same as they always have lyrically and delivery-wise. Neither party really steps outside of their comfort zones on here, however, causing the album to feel like it's just "more of the same" from both a production and lyrical standpoint. With that being said, there is nothing downright terrible on the album, with all of the tracks ranging from average to great. If you go into the album as a fan of either The Snowgoons or Onyx, you are probably really going to be feelin' it as a whole. As it stands for me, however, the album is just above average for the most part (with some flashes of greatness), but seems to drag on a bit at the end.

Favorite Tracks: Whut Whut, The Tunnel, We Don't Fuckin Care, Buc Bac, Wakedafucup


Post a Comment