Why is it that two of the best lyricist to ever grip a mic have never found the beats to carry their words? While Ras will be releasing an album with beats from tried and true legends (Primo & Dre), Canibus has taken the canvases of an underground dynamo. “Canibus is a dope lyricist, but…” Those statements are over, and Bis has Stoupe to thank. Bis recorded his vocals before heading off the boot camp and he left them in the hands of Stoupe, beatsmith behind Jedi Mind Tricks. Stoupe spent the winter crafting incredibly detailed and distinctive beats around the words of Bis. The result? The best album in the career of Canibus.
There is just no way you can listen to a Canibus album and front on his skills. His lyrical dexterity and the pure relentlessness in which he attacks the mic can be matched by very few. The term ‘dropping science’ is something Bis takes quite literally as his highly complex rhymes may require a biology textbook and a dictionary for some to grasp. Oh, and 16 bar rhymes? Don’t expect any of those.
“Genibus” is indicative of what the album is all about. Canibus drops his wordy rhymes over Stoupe’s expressive instrumental of eerie chants and xylophone chimes. The vibe is continued on “Levitibus,” but the tempo increases and the beat is even richer. The complex wordplay hits stride as well, “I’m above average with verbal semantics/the aurora borealis in the form of a rap ballad/they look at me like ‘poor bastard’/why can’t you manipulate Billboard with all your metaphor magic?” Stoupe continues to please the ears with more ill manipulation of vocal samples and Spanish guitar licks on “M-Sea-Cresy.”
The albums zenith is reached on “No Return,” as Bis’ storytelling is phenomenal and Stoupe’s Caribbean stylings are only outdone by his infectious chorus. Canibus becomes “Spartibus” and battle-mode is turned on and Stoupe cooks up another sick chorus with a classic Rakim sample. Canibus’ breathless flow is matched beautifully by a racing, colossal beat on “Cemantics.” With “Poet Laureate II” closing out the album, you will likely be left breathless just listening to Bis tear through Stoupe’s vocal loop for over 7 minutes…with no hooks, or run on beat. Ladies and gentlemen, that is how you rip a mic.
After “Mic Club” and now “Rip The Jacker,” signing with Babygrande was undoubtedly the best career move Bis ever made. With the help of his labelmate, Bis has made an album that is worthy of his talents. For all those who wrote off Canibus, one listen to “Rip The Jacker” will have you reaching for your erasers.