Biography All Music Guide
All Music Guide:
Handling spiritual and political themes with urgent poignancy, Brooklyn MC Hell Razah (b. Chron Smith) first enjoyed exposure in the mid- to late 90s comprising Wu-Tang Clan extended family member the Sunz of Man, who had moderate success with singles "Soldiers of Darkness" (1995) and the Earth, Wind, and Fire-assisted "Shining Star" (1998) from their Top 20 debut The Last Shall Be the First (1998). Hell Razah only made a few appearances on other Wu-Tang albums following Sunz of Man's debut (Ghostface Killah's acclaimed Supreme Clientele (2000) one of the few) before he went the solo route. With limited distribution, Razah's debut album When All Hell Breaks Loose arrived in 2001 on Echo International, though later the Brooklyn rapper teamed up with Wu-Tang producer 4th Disciple to deliver Freedom of Speech in 2004. Razah continued building his career on collaborations and formed the ominous, hardcore outfit Black Market Militia with Killah Priest, Tragedy Khadafi, Timbo King, and William Cooper. Nature Sounds, who issued that group's self-titled album in 2005, then offered Razah his first real album deal and helped line up underground heavy hitters like MF Doom, Talib Kweli, and Ras Kass for Razah's 2007 LP The Renaissance Child. A collaborative effort with production duo Blue Sky Black Death, entitled Razah's Ladder, was released via Babygrande later that same year.