Staff Pick: Ghostface Killah brings rap opera to A&R

Chris DeVille, Columbus Alive

For his latest LP, beloved Wu-Tang word wizard Ghostface Killah teamed with "Black Dynamite" composer Adrian Younge for a blacksploitation-styled rap opera called Twelve Reasons to Die.

The record's narrative tracks a black mobster who returns from the grave to become a literal ghost-faced killer. ("He spares no one," goes the female chorale.) Set to the sounds of brass-inflected '70s funk and disco that formed the bedrock of early hip-hop, it plays like a retro version of every other Ghostface record of the past decade, i.e. Ghost's grizzled language acrobatics couched in head-spinning storytelling about drugs, sex and money, i.e. an entertaining romp as usual.

Younge's band Venice Dawn will be on hand Friday when Ghostface plays A&R, so expect lots of Reasons.

A&R Music Bar

8 p.m. Friday, May 3

391 Neil Ave., Arena District