Rakim is only two years older than Jay-Z yet from another era entirely, a time when raps could get you atop Mount Olympus but not seated next to Charlie Rose atop the Spotted Pig. Meanwhile, opener Raekwon’s oeuvre left marks across the current rap diaspora, influencing Action Bronson and “new” New Yorkers as much as ascendant Atlantans like 2 Chainz. Still, the hyperbolic grotesquerie of today’s cross-border drug trade renders his recent crime raps less compelling than his new, august love raps.
Fri., Feb. 8, 6 p.m., 2013
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 30, 2013