Mar 23, 2012

2Pac - The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory (1996)

1. Intro / Bomb First (My Second Reply) 4:57
2. Hail Mary 5:09
3. Toss It Up 5:06
4. To Live & Die in L.A. 4:33
5. Blasphemy 4:38
6. Life of an Outlaw 4:55
7. Just Like Daddy 5:07
8. Krazy 5:15
9. White Man'z World 5:38
10. Me and My Girlfriend 5:08
11. Hold Ya Head 3:58
12. Against All Odds 4:37

I think it was Robert Christgau that pointed out an interesting difference between Biggie and Pac when he was looking at Biggie's pre-Ready to Die career: Pac was a sensitive, conscious guy, convincing the world he was a thug in his music, and Biggie was a thug convincing the world he was an intelligent, funny dude. The Biggie tapes kinda support that theory and so do most of Pac's albums. The Don Killuminati, however, is interesting 'cause in it Pac largely disregards sensitivity and conscious wisdom for the sake of something infinitely darker and heavier than the world expected

It's hard not to acknowledge the debate between fans and cynics- The Don Killuminati is either a rushed product put out by Death Row following Pac's death as a sort of cash-in, or the ultimate product of the martyr image Pac was going for his whole career. I go for the latter. The lyrics are incredibly paranoid and personal and anything rushed just adds to the air of desperation- it's a guy who knows he's about to die. It's actually scary hearing the mood-swings from the aggressive Bomb First, to the affectionate To Live and Die in LA, to the dizzy, apathetic Krazy ("one time for my niggas in jail cells, one more for my niggas doing life in hell") as he goes through the phases of someone accepting death. People have complained that he's overrated as an MC, often going for lyrical content and word-emphasis over a really fluid flow, but The Don Killuminati has some of his most aggressive and hard hitting rapping on display. Obviously we'll never know, but I actually think it's pretty hard to take this as a purely cynical move on Suge Knight's part when the rapper behind everything sounds so convinced throughout



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