20 Songs, 1 Hour 10 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

With Bruce Wayne, Esham aimed to combine the high-quality production values of his previous effort, Dead Flowerz, with the deranged attitude of his early work. To accomplish this fusion he assumed a new alter ego — a ubiquitous move in the rap world of 1997. Esham envisioned his hometown of Detroit as “Gothom City” and himself as “Bruce Wayne,” an all-seeing, all-knowing denizen of the urban underworld. Helping to populate the landscape of the album is Esham’s crew of rapper pals: TNT, Mastamind, Moebadis and Zelah Williams. There is no overarching story here, simply a sequence of vignettes dealing with Esham’s favorite themes: unhinged sexual encounters, spontaneous outbursts of violence, and generally wicked merrymaking. There is no shortage of wonderfully unhinged beats — just check “You and Me,” “Where My B At,” “Detective” and “Nervous”— but the album’s disturbing outlook is also juxtaposed to some of Esham’s smoothest beats. “Seems Like Yesterday” is moody jazz, while “You Betta Ask Somebody” makes unlikely (but effective) use of Michael Jackson’s “Rock With You.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

With Bruce Wayne, Esham aimed to combine the high-quality production values of his previous effort, Dead Flowerz, with the deranged attitude of his early work. To accomplish this fusion he assumed a new alter ego — a ubiquitous move in the rap world of 1997. Esham envisioned his hometown of Detroit as “Gothom City” and himself as “Bruce Wayne,” an all-seeing, all-knowing denizen of the urban underworld. Helping to populate the landscape of the album is Esham’s crew of rapper pals: TNT, Mastamind, Moebadis and Zelah Williams. There is no overarching story here, simply a sequence of vignettes dealing with Esham’s favorite themes: unhinged sexual encounters, spontaneous outbursts of violence, and generally wicked merrymaking. There is no shortage of wonderfully unhinged beats — just check “You and Me,” “Where My B At,” “Detective” and “Nervous”— but the album’s disturbing outlook is also juxtaposed to some of Esham’s smoothest beats. “Seems Like Yesterday” is moody jazz, while “You Betta Ask Somebody” makes unlikely (but effective) use of Michael Jackson’s “Rock With You.”

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