PRhyme is a duo comprised of renown New York based producer DJ Premier & the criminally underrated Detroit MC Royce da 5’9″. They’ve collaborated countless times with each other in the past with songs like “Boom” & “Hip Hop”, but now they are officially forming together to drop their self-titled full-length debut.
The album starts off with the title track, where Royce basically tells the audience he’s never falling off over a somewhat mellow boom bap beat. The next song “Dat Sound Good” with Ab-Soul & Mac Miller is filled with charismatic braggadocious bars over a grimy beat with some keys & a guitar while the track “U Looz” is only a minute & a half long, it’s definitely in your face. Especially with the final line of Royce’s verse where he says “this is for the real hip-hop niggas who’ll never ever ask me am I here to replace Guru”. The song “U Should Know” sees Royce putting sense in all the wack rappers out & not only is the Dwele hook on point, but I also love how Preem chops up numerous parts of “True Love” by The Delfonics for the instrumental. Especially with the prominent horns throughout.
The track “Courtesy” compares Royce’s life to both Bumpy Johnson & Nucky Thompson over some explosive drums & a haunting organ while “Wishin'” with Common basically tells us that they wish someone would disrespect them over a killer boom bap/rap rock fused beat. The song “To Me, To You” with Jay Electronica is basically them speaking their minds over a sinister beat while the track “Underground Kings” with Killer Mike & ScHoolboy Q sees all of them talking about the beginnings of their careers to where they are now & the Run-D.M.C. samples throughout are absolutely flawless. The standard edition finishes off with “Microphone Preem” by Slaughterhouse, where the supergroup delivers a sequel to their classic 2009 song “Microphone” that’s just as raw & angry as the original. A year after the album’s original release, they re-released it with 4 new tracks & I’m gonna chop them up right now.
The first bonus track “Golden Era” with Joey Bada$$ gets reminiscent about the titular era of hip hop & the instrumental suits it perfectly. The next bonus track “Wishin’ II” is an equally gritty sequel to the first one except we get a killer verse from Black Thought, who was supposed to be on the original version of that song. The penultimate bonus track “Highs & Lows” with MF DOOM & Phonte vents about people sleeping on them over a guitar/keyboard boom bap beat & then the final bonus track “Mode II” with Logic is a sequel to their song that appeared on the Shady Records curated Southpaw soundtrack, but it didn’t need to be 7 minutes long.
As a whole, this is a modern classic. The chemistry between Royce & Preemo is stronger than ever before, but the standard edition was too short. However, they made up for it by adding on 4 new tracks a year later. And while the features are mostly great, there didn’t need to be one on almost every track. Even on the deluxe version.Regardless, I hope we get another album from the duo in the future