Tuesday 8 July 2014

An appreciation of AZ's shelved Final Call album (sorta)

It's now been a decade since AZ's annus horribilis of 2004 where his friendship with Cam'Ron resulted in Nas not clearing Serious for AZ's Final Call album before the album leaked onto the internet months before its release date to scathing reviews from XXL causing AZ to scrap the entire project. A handful of its tracks would later go on to fan-favourites which appeared on various unofficial compilations & as bonus tracks on official albums, and the entire album eventually got Lost Tapes-billed CD release on Koch Records 4 years later in 2008, but unless you're a hardcore AZ maven this entire story probably passed you by, and the album currently finds itself in danger of being relegated from the Comparative Obscurity subsection of the noughties New York rap canon into the depths of Complete Oblivion.

Serious was the first track since How Ya Livin' where Nas outrapped AZ so it's probably best left as an unofficial entry in the Anthony Cruz catalogue, and shelving Final Call was a rash decision on AZ's part when the album was cut from the same Coogi sweater & Evisu denim cloth as his previous full-length Aziatic and contained a bunch of great songs which he could've condensed down into an EP and then sold independently in New York as he'd done 4 years earlier with S.O.S.A promo CD when he faced similar issues after departing from his Noo Trybe Records deal.

You can't buy Final Call or anything from it on iTunes/Amazon etc because AZ had a fall out with Bob Perry, and all the RAR file links to it are probably dead at this point, so ya boy Ho Hattie Collins right chea whittled it down to its essentials and uploaded the results for doz dat slept. No Magic Hour because CL Smooth sounds like a Tomtit on a round of beef over that beat, no You Know even though I love it because it might be a bit too Rap & Bullshit for all y'all savages, and I ripped No Strings Attached from the Anthology compilation because it's mastered better than the one on Final Call.

AZ - Final Call (EP edit)

1. Live Wire
2. Talkin' Gangsta
3. Seems That Way
4. I am AZ
5. No Strings Attached
6. Omega
7. The Truth



GGGGGGG said...


step one said...

Nice work. Didn't know about the AZ/Cam/Nas thing.

Anonymous said...

I came here tonight wondering if you had offered your thoughts on Red Magic yet. Lo and behold, an AZ post at the top of the page but still no reference to the new joint...which seemed to appear right after you requested an AZ summer jam in your top June tracks post.

Kelvin Mack10zie said...

Red Magic is aiight but it's not quite the jiggy summer jam I was hoping for.

sisilafami said...


Kelvin Mack10zie said...

My edit without that Lemon bloke's spoken word interludes and Quiet Money Anthem is better, imo.

d said...

Cheers bud, have to show this to my local member of teamAZ

This clears up the "wtf lost classic" misapprehension I had cos once I heard it I axed half the songs. ngl theres a heap of Memphis Sessions songs that are now the preferred ones for me.

Kelvin Mack10zie said...

Memphis Sessions versions of Doin' That and This Is What I Do are godly.

Alex said...