From the very first moments of the spoken word intro and musical bars of King Noah, it’s clear that Wordsmith’s allegiance to hip-hop lies in the past and not the present. This is a storyteller concerned with other things than violence and degrading women. There’s varied guitar moments, there’s a lot of narration, but mostly there’s a continued commitment to an aesthetic that ties the whole thing together. There’s a lot of miscues and missed opportunities spread over this release and it ends up being a little bit bloated at a near-hour run-time. It’d be a little less noticeable if not every track started with Wordsmith’s monologues to his son but that’s who the record’s for. In that aspect, it’s a personal triumph. While it was certainly worth sharing with the world, it’ll probably be forgotten by everyone else by years end.