Saturday, 14 February 2015

(What If...?) Raekwon - Only Built For Cuban Linx Part II - O.G. Version

What if Raekwon's epic follow up to his classic 1995 debut Only Built For Cuban Linx had dropped in 2006 with the original tracks slated for the album?

Big shouts to my man Seanuz from Wu Corp for this one, him and Claaa7 have been kicking the idea about for a while now and they have both come up with their own versions. After a lot of thought and tweeking this is Seanuz's final vision of how the album might have sounded in 2006 before it was shelved and Rae went back to the lab to record more tracks. A lot of the track names were changed for the final 2009 release, this version keeps the earliest names for all possible tracks. Early on it was announced that Dr Dre would handle the majority of production on Cuban Linx 2 and it would be an Aftermath release. Rae explained that they were originally working together on a couple of tracks but everything just got better as they kept working.

“Allah put us in the right place, I’m working real hard, putting little pieces together. The album is coming out great. Everything is up to par. We still working on it, we never stop working till the last day.”

Ultimately it didn't work out with Dre, due to his busy workload but two tracks by Dre ended up on the final 2009 release. The Chef has confirmed that there is at least one more finished Dre track to come out of those sessions but it is as yet unreleased. The other production credits confirmed around 2006 were Rza, Scram Jones, J Dilla and Young Justice (Son of Gza). The two Dre tracks have been left off this version as they don't really fit with the theme of the others. These have been replaced by two True Master joints from around 2006 which may have been intended for his Master Craftsman project "Batman & Robin" and "White Cloud Olympus", they fit in nicely here with the rest of the album so have been included. Early talk was that Inspectah Deck and Gza (as Rollie Fingers and Maximillion) had contributed a lot of material for Cuban Linx 2, similar to Ghostface's role as Tony Starks on the original, meaning that they had a large number of guest spots reviving the Wu-Gambinos from 1995.

The two banging street singles, "Baggage Handlers" and "State Of Grace" didn't make the final version due to being on nearly every mixtape from the time. They are included here and rightly so. The screaming hook from Busta (who also acted as executive producer for a while) on "Baggage Handlers" is a sick opening to the album. There are seven tracks from  Rza on this version, The Abbott spoke about "Rockstars and Smoking Barrels" in a magazine article from 2006 as being slated for Cuban Linx 2 along with "No Matter How Hard You Try" which ended up on his 2008 Digi Snacks album. The version included here is the extended cut with a U-God verse and crazy long ass into. "Weak Spot" ended up on the Wu's 2007 effort 8 Diagrams but this version is a slightly earlier mix from the 8 Diagrams mixtape. "Thug World" also found its way onto 8 Diagrams being retitled "Unpredictable" the track on here is a remake as close as possible to the original joint using Rae and U-God's verses from "Execution in Autumn" that were actually recorded for "Thug World" in the Cuban Linx 2 sessions.

So that's it... Listen Above Tracklist and Download Below.

Give it a spin, then ask ya self...

What If...?


1. Baggage Handlers
2. Rockstars and Smoking Barrels (feat Inspectah Deck AKA Rollie Fingers & GZA AKA Maximillion)
3. Kareem Khan (feat Slick Rick, Masta Killa AKA Noodles & GZA AKA Maximillion)
4. Sonny’s Missing
5. Batman & Robin (feat Ghostface Killah AKA Tony Starks)
6. No Matter How Hard You Try (feat U-God AKA Lucky Hands, Zu Keeper, RZA AKA Bobby Steels & Inspectah Deck AKA Rollie Fingers)
7. Walk With Me
8. 40 Deuce (feat Jadakiss AKA Montego Jada & Styles P AKA Styles Pinero)
9. Secret Indictment (feat Inspectah Deck AKA Rollie Fingers & RZA AKA Bobby Steels)
10. White Cloud Olympus
11. Kiss The Ring (feat Inspectah Deck AKA Rollie Fingers & Masta Killa AKA Noodles)
12. 10 Bricks (feat Cappadonna AKA Cappachino & Ghostface Killah AKA Tony Starks)
13. Weak Spot (feat RZA AKA Bobby Steels & GZA AKA Maximillion)
14. Thug World (feat U-God AKA Lucky Hands, Inspectah Deck AKA Rollie Fingers & RZA AKA Bobby Steels)
15. State Of Grace
16. House Of Flying Daggers (feat Inspectah Deck AKA Rollie Fingers, Ghostface Killah AKA Tony Starks, Method Man AKA Johnny Blaze & GZA AKA Maximillion)
17. Sunlight (feat RZA AKA Bobby Steels)
18. Ason Jones

Download Here!

1 comment: