Dear Hip-Hop Gods:
Please allow the production on The Seventh Seal to bring out the best in your bretheren, a hero to many an old- and medium-school hip-hop head, and a much-needed lyrical role model for those who are bastardizing the genre today. Please allow The R to stage a formidable return to our ears, and not fall short of long-overdue expectations, especially due to inadequate beats. Also, please make it clear to those beyond our regional borders that NY hip-hop continues to make history, with new artists and legendary icons such as fellow Long Islander Rakim, so that we may expand our humble reporting enterprise to the level it deserves, telling the true hip-hop stories that deserve telling from the NYC-area, including this one, the highly anticipated return of the God MC.
- Birthplace Magazine
After months, if not years of Internet speculation and rumor, the man many call The God MC’s management and label officially confirm that Rakim Allah will release his long awaited new album The Seventh Seal on November 17, 2009.
Guest artists include Busta Rhymes, Jadakiss, Maino, Tracey Horton, IQ, Styles P, and others, including Destiny Griffin, Rakim’s own daughter. The artist’s Ra Records shares the imprint in a joint venture with Tuscan Villa and SMC Recordings and is distributed through Fontana/Universal Music Group.
Since its release, the album’s lead single “Holy Are You” has won praise from critics and fans alike.
“The God MC previews his long-awaited The Seventh Seal with a lyrically adept reminder of how he earned the name,” with Billboard proclaiming “Rakim is in top form, richly merging self-mythologizing reflections on his legacy with religious imagery.”
His first full album of new material in almost a decade, The Seventh Seal is Rakim’s contemporary observation of the Hip-Hop culture he helped define.
While staying loyal to his New York roots, Rakim has created a body of work that encompasses the very best of regional, underground and mainstream styles that are reformed and delivered through his intricate lyricism and the seemingly effortless flow for which he is revered.
He has enlisted a slew of production talent including Needlz, Nottz, Jake One, Nick Wiz, Ty Fiffe and more on the album’s well-rounded tracks.
“The Seventh Seal is my own revelation…my way of taking the best of what Hip-Hop has to offer, what we as a culture and a community have to offer, putting my stamp on it and leading us forward while constantly respecting what we’ve already accomplished,” Rakim says. “When you’ve been blessed with a career like mine, you develop a deep relationship with the music, and that love is recognized by the true heads that share it with you. You’ll see us keep building as we break through each Seal … showing the best of what I can do in many forms, bringing the energy and having fun, but first I’m laying that foundation and give my longtime fans the conscious fire they expect.”
ABOUT RAKIM ALLAH:
Universally referenced as one of the Masters of the Microphone and an influence and inspiration to his peers and followers alike, Rakim first exploded onto the scene with the release of iconic Eric B. is President in 1986 with long time collaborator Eric B. The single marked a turning point in the Rap world – raising the bar for future emcees and revolutionizing the way rhymes are delivered. Rakim’s intricately, intellectual lyrics draw their force from his worldly experience, inner faith and progressive contemplation, fueled by a deep understanding of not just Hip-Hop, but also the Jazz and R&B influences that have surrounded his family since his youth. Rakim’s recordings – including the all-time classics, Paid In Full, Follow the Leader and The 18th Letter – have sold in the multi-millions worldwide. Billboard, Rolling Stone, MTV and a host of others consistently refer to Paid in Full as “the greatest Hip-Hop album of all time” – a claim often repeated in audience polls. The Seventh Seal marks the first album under his own imprint, Ra Records, allowing a true freedom in creative control unparalleled since his monumental first recordings.
ABOUT SMC RECORDINGS:
Established in March of 2005, SMC Recordings is home to independent music and artists. Based in San Francisco, CA, the company’s prized accomplishment is its unique philosophy of artist development, where artists are encouraged to participate with the label from inception through maintenance of their career. This innovative structure has garnered industry veterans to join the company and aid in its growth. SMC’s range of artist owned label partners includes national heavyweights like Rakim and Killer Mike along with a staple of regional acts constantly being developed such as Messy Marv, The Jacka, and the Town Thizzness brand…SMC is distributed by Fontana, the indie subsidiary of Universal. It is SMC’s humble regional beginnings and loyalty to their artists and their careers that will guarantee the company to always be on the precipice of creativity and expansion in the music game.