Ruff Child’s latest Album ‘Hail Mary’ is appropriately named, as it has a hint of Tupac in it. However, this Album is more similar to Tupac’s 2paocalypse now than All eyez on me which is the name sake of the first track on the album as Ruff Child opens up and displays the same political and social consciousness 2 Pac showed but in his own unique way. ‘All eyes on me’ The first track on the album starts off with a short speech praising the strength of black people; highlighting the struggles black people go through, commending black people for “Still striving to achieve” Ruff Child in this track also touches upon key social issues which affect black people today, such as gentrification and police brutality.
Not completely free from the confides of the hood, Ruff child sometimes delves into illicit activities he’s still involved in. Which is at stark contrast from the socially conscious version of himself he has shown us in the Album. Although Ruff Child is aware of the unfairness of the system, he is not completely free from it and he admits that, as he raps on Rainy Summer, “High-rise living, council burning down all these motherf**king estates, one day we’ll escape and takeover.”
He raps in the cleverly named track 999, “On my knees please forgive me lord; Drank blood and danced with evil spirits; My mind state triple nine” This contrast plays on the Mind on Ruff Child and you can see a clear conflict of conscious. Aware of the strife Black People suffer and coming from an African home where religion is a very strong part of growing up, Ruff Child wonders with all the bad he has done throughout his life will God still accept him at heaven’s gate?
The beauty of this album and what Ruff Child excels in is his storytelling abilities. Not only does he highlight the key issue facing black people in society today. He also gives us a glimpse into his inner self. “OG riding through the south-side in the streets where I use to have beef” Ruff Child here lets us see his past self and the progression from then to now. He now cruises through his hood, one would be forgiven for imagining a summer sunset cruise in a Cadillac, in Compton LA, and he lets you know he’s earned the right to do so.
In all this project is a pleasant throwback to a more lyrical era of rap music, which is why it should have a unique place in the UK scene today. Incomparable to what is out there now and it deserves the attention of your ears, but listen or not Ruff Child doesn’t care as he raps on the album “I’m not in it for the fame, I’m in it for the music,” and who really is these days?