The Movement

Artist: Inspectah DeckTitle: The MovementRating: 2 1/2 StarsReviewed by: Toshi Kondo

In 1997 two important events happened in the Wu-Tang Clan chronology. “Wu-Tang Forever” was released, receiving mixed reviews and not fulfilling many people’s expectations. The other was resident producer RZA beginning to share some of the production duties. With this, Wu’s fall from hip-hop’s elite began and eventually led to their present day struggles to remain relevant within today’s materialistic and shallow hip-hop enclave. It’s with these inopportune circumstances that one of Wu’s most underrated lyricists, Inspectah Deck, releases The Movement, his second solo opus.

Unfortunately The Movement, does little to help Wu’s quest to regain their foothold on hip-hop’s conscience. Proclaiming that the days of commercial watered-down hip-hop are gone, Deck proceeds to deliver an album that thematically and musically mirrors the redundant street music distributed by most of today’s popular mixtapes DJs. Accentuating these shortcomings is the noticeable lack of appearances from any core Wu-members.

The most striking drawback of this album is the surfeit of generic and unimaginative hooks. They range from boring (“That Sh*t”) to those that are so wack they ruin the entire song (“The Stereotype”). Another unpleasant surprise was the transformation of Deck’s delivery. In the past his concise and forceful delivery would stab your ears with creative similes (“Wild like rock stars who smash guitars”) and transcendent thoughts. However, on The Movement, he sounds strangely uninspired and at times seems uninterested.

The nadir of this album has to be “Bumpin And Grindin”. When you hear the hook come in, it’ll feel like your watching a cheesy Miller Lite commercial. This feeble attempt to make a club banger leaves you wondering if Deck’s A&R was that mountain climber playing an electric guitar that GZA was talking about. Some redemption is found on “Framed” where Kool G Rap, Killa Sin, and Deck defend themselves against false murder charges. G Rap defiantly spits, “Release me from this Elmer Fudd shit/ The glove don’t fit/ Too tall for the cops to squish and the slugs don’t fit/ He was hit with a nine right?/ I bust slugs with a fifth/ You got any of my DNA or blood up in this bitch?”

Listening to Deck verbally annihilate Ghostface’s “Assassination Day” and Gang Starr’s “Above the Clouds” will give insight into why one would be extremely unsatisfied with The Movement. Rest assured that this album will be remembered as one of the more disappointing Wu solo releases.

Related Stories