Lupe Fiasco Muhammad Walks

Lupe Fiasco Muhammad Walks

Despite the hype and tumultuous build up to Chicago rhyme-slinger Lupe Fiasco’s debut ’06 release, Food and Liquor, the clear truth is that, come drop date, most of the MC’s deadliest verses were nowhere to be found. Muhammad Walks is essentially a mixtape crate dig that gathers some of the rapper’s rawest gems in album form, with the resulting disc showing just how much lay beyond that mass-released debut. Lupe’s vivid metaphors and clever cut-ups are better than most on tracks like the "Mercy Mercy Me” themed "Pen & the Needles” and laid-back banger "Lupe The Killer,” as he laces together endless streams of intricate storylines as effortlessly as a blink and a breath. But it’s his thought-provoking social diatribes that grab the most attention, with Lupe flipping the script on cuts by Kanye, N.E.R.D. and Anthony Hamilton, offering up a slightly more enlightened view on the whole conflict diamond situation and defending Islam on the record’s title track. Let’s just hope he’s saved something for the sophomore set. (Sonic Unyon)