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Artist: Jedi Mind Tricks
Label: Babygrande Records
Genre: Hip Hop/Rap
Release: Jan 2006   My Rating: 0
Duration: 48:55
Summary: On their fifth release Vinnie and Stoupe craft what I believe to be their best effort yet. Say what you will about Vinnie's lyrics, but he brings it to your chest every time he spits. I personally don't find his lyrics offensive, but I think it's safe to say that JMT's stuff isn't for the easily offended. As far as the CD itself, Stoupe brings the heat on the boards. He's been dope and consistant from day one, so all you fans kow what to expect. Though the album is laced with banger after banger (I'd say 16 of 19 joints are tight), I think the consensus on "Uncommon Valor" being the best track on the entire album is pretty much spot on. The mentality of Vietnam soldiers. Brilliant. Vinnie provides one side of the equation (the scared soldier that wants to just do his job and leave) while R.A. is the booze drinking, vietnamese women screwin' (his words, not mine), glory seeking, violence loving soldier looking to be a hero. It's original and captivating in it's delivery. Hip Hop could definitely use more of that.



The DVD contains the video for "Heavy Metal Kings" which features Ill Bill and has a cameo by R.A. The Rugged Man. It also contains behind the scenes footage (Vinnie signing records, R.A. commentary, the making of the video, etc...).



You know, there isn't much wrong with this album. I found the three "bonus" tracks to be so-so (there are no wack tracks though), but what bores me the quickest is Vinnie P's cadence -- it never changes. Some will argue that if you've been down with JMT for a while then you should be used to that, and they're probably right, but I'm beginning to tire of the predictability of his cadence. No worries though, the content of his lyrics make up for it.



Servants In Heaven, Kings In Hell is one of the top ten '06 rap releases. Vinnie Paz and Stoupe have a consistant formula. No peaks and valleys, just steady, dependable production. With that being said, I think this is probably the first peak, because this is their best album in my humble opinion. I recommend adding this one to collection.



Standout Tracks: Heavy Metal Kings feat. Ill Bill, Shadow Business, Put 'Em In The Grave, Uncommon Valor feat. R.A. The Rugged Man (My Favorite), When All Light Dies, Black Winter Day, Razorblade Salvation, Outlive The War feat. Sean Price & Block McCloud, and Suicide



Artist: Jedi Mind Tricks
Label: Babygrande Records
Genre: Hip Hop/Rap
Release: Jan 2004   My Rating: 0
Duration: 75:55
Summary: One of the best to come out of the underground...Stoupe comes with AMAZING production on par with Pete Rock and Dj Premier, while Vinnie and Jus come with fuctional, but interesting lyrics.You really shouldnt take these two very seriously, as the production is the star of the album. If you enjoy anything by Gang Starr, Non Phixion, or Ras Kass, you owe it to yourself to check this record.



Album highlights

1.Retaliation

2.Contra

3.Blood Reign



Artist: Jedi Mind Tricks
Label: Babygrande Records
Genre: Pop
Release: Aug 2003   My Rating: 0
Duration: 64:04
Summary: The menacing, cryptic style of Philly boys Vinnie Paz and Stoupe the Enemy of Mankind has served them well on cult classics "The Psycho-Social CD" and "Violent By Design", making them champions of the underground. On the highly anticipated "Visions of Gandhi" it's Stoupe's production--split evenly between moody, down-tempo beats and not-quite-commercial, mariachi- and salsa-inflected rhythms--that once again carries the day. Unfortunately, the lyrical content--a mélange of clichéd hip-hop signifiers and mixed religious metaphors--just can't match up to Stoupe's beats. The copious guest appearances (including Kool G Rap, Non Phixion, and Ras Kass) are sure to draw curious bystanders to JMT's special brand of esoterica, but they can't hide the fact that lyrically the duo seems to have lost a bit of their visionary edge. If you're looking for dope Stoupe beats with lyrics to match, you might do better to check out another 2003 Stoupe production, Canibus's "Rip the Jacker". "--Rebecca Levine"