13 Songs, 51 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Though it lacks the steely focus of Hell Hath No Fury, Til the Casket Drops captures one of hip-hop’s most formidable duos in a moment of transition. For the first time, Clipse collaborate with producers outside of the Neptunes, their longstanding production team, and the risk pays off: DJ Khalil & Chin triumph with the taut, dirty riff of “Kinda Like a Big Deal” and the ghetto reggae of “There Was a Murder,” both of which inspire sharp rhymes and renewed energy. Clipse’s criminal flows just aren’t cut out for the club, but the Neptunes still manage to give Clipse a classic track in the form of “Popular Demand (Popeyes),” a halftime stomp that invites a verse from Cam’ron, whose verbal precision is well-suited to Clipse’s style. Til the Casket Drops isn’t a drug-dealer manifesto on par with the first two Clipse albums, but the final song “Life Change” suggests the group is ready to move beyond crack rap altogether: “Wasted so much time stuntin’ for folk / When really the whole time I was stuntin’ my growth / A message to the youth, what I’m offering is hope / Now something’s gotta change, I’m at the end of my rope.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

Though it lacks the steely focus of Hell Hath No Fury, Til the Casket Drops captures one of hip-hop’s most formidable duos in a moment of transition. For the first time, Clipse collaborate with producers outside of the Neptunes, their longstanding production team, and the risk pays off: DJ Khalil & Chin triumph with the taut, dirty riff of “Kinda Like a Big Deal” and the ghetto reggae of “There Was a Murder,” both of which inspire sharp rhymes and renewed energy. Clipse’s criminal flows just aren’t cut out for the club, but the Neptunes still manage to give Clipse a classic track in the form of “Popular Demand (Popeyes),” a halftime stomp that invites a verse from Cam’ron, whose verbal precision is well-suited to Clipse’s style. Til the Casket Drops isn’t a drug-dealer manifesto on par with the first two Clipse albums, but the final song “Life Change” suggests the group is ready to move beyond crack rap altogether: “Wasted so much time stuntin’ for folk / When really the whole time I was stuntin’ my growth / A message to the youth, what I’m offering is hope / Now something’s gotta change, I’m at the end of my rope.”

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