Well crafted bars, over flawless production and a robust & mature album made up of introspective views, street tales and clever wordplay. That’s what Lord Jessiah and Bronze Nazareth have cooked up and served hip hop heads in the form of ‘Time Waits For No One‘. Before we get right into it though, let’s take a moment to give flowers to Bronze Nazareth who time and time again, seems to bring out the best of an emcee with his incredible production and uncanny ability to create muscial masterpieces that emcees simply shine on. He has done it with Ghostface Killah, Ras Kass, Crooked I, Recognize Ali and countless others, and this time he replicates those masterpieces with Lord Jessiah.
Lord Jessiah absolutely steps up to the mic on this album and crushes it. There is a clear and audible dedication not just to the craft, not just to creating dope music or writing razor sharp lyrics, but to the entire craft of making hip hop music. Every line from start to finish is deliberate, thought out, comprehensive and engaging. You hang on every bar he drops, and he does it effortlessly and seriously so smoothly you almost miss just how HARD some of the bars are. You may not hear a lot of content from Lord Jessiah, but what you do hear, is premium quality, supremely special, lyrical slaughter.
‘Time Waits For No One‘ kicks things off with ‘Veteran’s Run‘ which sees Bronze Nazareth commence the masterclass with a triumphant, boom bap beat and sample that Lord Jessiah uses to showcase his verbal onslaught from the jump. ‘Sermon On The Mount‘ is another horn-laced number that LJ uses as his pulpit for some serious mic slaying. Mickey Factz joins the party for ‘Unlimited Jewels‘ as the album continues to build upon the boom bap / horn structured production, and this joint has a real Wu-Tang vibe (both sonically and lyrically) to it so you know it’s crazy dope.
The musical journey continues with the haunting ‘Audubon‘ which is eerily hypnotic with Gregorian Monk-esque chants mixed with subtle strings, while Lord Jessiah spits some serious truth telling. ‘God Hour‘ features Bub Rock and there is a nice energy shift, subtle enough that the album stays cohesive, but a distinct moving of the needle. It’s a little more upbeat, has a more vibrant flow and Bub Rock pairs nicely with Lord Jessiah. Bronze keeps getting funky on ‘Cutting Board‘ which features Illah Dayz and it gets the head nodding. LJ delivers a female friendly banger like Raekwon on ‘Ice Cream’, smooth and authentic.
Two lyrical swordsman spar on ‘Designer Cloth‘ as Lord Jessiah and Solomon Childs slice up the beat with some braggadocious swagger, while ‘Courage Lord‘ takes us back to church with the slowed-down, gospel-hook infused joint which allows Lord Jessiah to get back to his poignant insights and deliberate delivery. The next joint ‘Rotten To The Veins‘ is a stellar track and one where a posse style cut is flawlessly executed. Each emcee – Ty Farris, Recognize Ali and Lord Jessiah himself – bring the flames, each artist building their verse as the production from Nazareth leads them to the pinnacle of each sixteen. It’s inspired.
The penultimate track is ‘The Broken Man‘ and Lord Jessiah gives us a moving, introspective tale with a touching hook over ethereal keys and the albums comes to a close with ‘Mystery Pie‘, a soulful, jazz infused joint that has a lounge kinda feel, but Lord Jessiah delivers like enigmatic slam poetry, forcing you to listen to his final act in this musical triumph. It gets to the end of the album, eleven phenomenal tracks that have taken us on a stirring and spirited journey through the lyrical musings of Lord Jessiah and the soundtrack from Bronze Nazareth that tells stories in and of itself.
Bangers: Rotten To The Veins, Audubon, Unlimited Jewels, Sermon On The Mount, God Hour.
Score: 9.5 / 10. This album is brilliant from start to finish, offering a smooth yet inspired ride over traditionally dusty boom bap beats and with a sharpness of pen not seen a lot these days. The poise within this album can’t be understated as there are times Lord Jessiah can rap your face off, and other times his flow forces the listener to contribute by paying closer attention to the sharp yet subtle wordplay. It’s a wonderful album and one that is sure to receive a lot of attention when people get to shortlisting the best joints of 2022.