It’s clear from listening to B Dolan’s latest release, Kill the Wolf, that he is truly out to master his craft. He constantly pushes boundaries with his deadly combination of razor sharp wordplay and endless intelligence and over the course of the album, Dolan takes a raw and honest look at the world around him, creating his most captivating record yet.
Historically, the electric guitar and hip hop have always had a complicated relationship but it is an element that is used regularly throughout. The production mixes live instrumentation and classic drum breaks with perfection. The distorted guitar riffs suit Dolan’s abrasive style and add layers to tracks like ‘Graffiti Busters’ and ‘Stay Inspired’ and one thing that’s clear is that a lot of this album will translate well to the stage and is sure to increase his already mammoth-sized live sound.
The most interesting stories come in the form of ‘Rats Get Fat Master’ and ‘Who Killed Russell Jones’. The former may begin with a lighthearted exchange between B and a child, but what follows is an intensely delivered tale of social and political injustice.
The latter explores who could actually be responsible for the death of Wu Tang Clan’s Ol Dirty Bastard and the minimal production allows the striking words to resonate with the listener, creating one of the most powerful moments on the album.
While his lyrical prowess has never been in question, Dolan raps as if he has something to prove on Kill the Wolf. An obvious amount of blood, sweat and tears went into the five year writing and recording process and it results in a finished product that is as profound as it is angry. If more artists put as much time and effort into their projects as B Dolan has in to this, then there might be more consistently enthralling albums like this one being released. Maybe good things actually do come to those who wait.