Damn! What could have been...
Way back when The Roots had their temporary break up, Black Thought was on Sway & Tech's "The Wake Up Show" (around 2001) talking about two things that never came to fruition: 1. His Solo Album, 2. The beginning of MC Supergroup The Fantastic Four.
The Fantastic Four was supposed to be a group consisting of Black Thought, Talib Kweli, Pharoahe Monch, and Common. I remember Sway & Tech were trippin' at the IDEA of such masterful emcees coming together to make an album...but unfortunately, it was all too good to be true and the idea became a forgotten kernel of possibility.
About a year later, I bought Talib Kweli's "Quality" album and was BLOWN AWAY by a track called "Guerilla Monsoon Rap" produced by a younger Kanye West with rhymes by Kweli, Black Thought, and Pharoahe Monch. Was this a hint at what a Fantastic Four album could have been? If so, where's Common?
Further evidence of the Fantastic Four's potential existence come from lines by Pharoahe Monch.
From his first verse:
"See these FOUR emcees came to get down
Rearrange the rap game, change ya whole sound"
There's no rhymes on the song by Kanye (who at the time was known just as a Producer)...so where's the fourth MC?
From Monch's second verse:
"Guerrilla monsoon rap, smell the fumes, get in tune wit it
When I attack your city, y'all gon' think DR. DOOM did it"
A clear reference to Fantastic Four's main villain, Dr. Doom.
"I'm pissed - cumulus clouds of ominous
Words of the FOUR, the rawness that'll restore ya calmness"
Another reference to "The Four". Hmmmm...
The song still KILLS IT five years after it's debut. Kanye and Kweli were a match made in heaven back in 2002 (remember "Get By"?!). But it makes me so damned depressed that the Fantastic Four never became a reality.
[MP3] Talib Kweli feat. Black Thought & Pharaohe Monch :: Guerilla Monsoon Rap