Mathematics The Problem

Mathematics is responsible for the most recognisable rap brand in the world: the ubiquitous W of the Wu-Tang Clan. He got his start disc jockeying block parties in Queens, and eventually graduating to hanging out with the Wu in their prime. Now he makes beats and their damned good too. He relies heavily on the RZA sound, marrying soul records, mean bass lines and skittering beats and summons every member of the Wu-Tang Clan and a host of other MCs to contribute to this album. Instead of disappointing, Method Man spits a verse that erases many of the whack ones we've heard since Tical. Mathematics constantly outdoes himself, reverting to the sound that put the Wu on the map — haunting instrumentals that pierce your mind like a dagger. "Break That" features one of the last performances by Ol' Dirty Bastard. Mathematics lets a sparse, staccato guitar riff do most of the work, never weighing down his tracks with overproduction. For Wu fans this is not one you want to pass up. (Nature Sounds)