Inspectah Deck, aka the Rebel INS, may not have had the same solo success as his Wu-Tang brothers, but there’s no denying that bar-for-bar, he has the most memorable verses in the entire group.
This is the very same rapper who set it off on Wu’s debut single “Protect Ya Neck,” featured on one of the greatest rap songs of all time “C.R.E.A.M.” and, of course, delivered a top five rap verse of all time on “Triumph.” Not only is Deck responsible for some of the greatest Wu verses, he’s rapped some of the best guest verses of all time.
Now let’s go bomb atomically and check out Inspectah Deck’s top 10 guest verses.
10. “9 Milli Bros.”
Other rappers on the record: Ghostface Killah, Raekwon, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Cappadonna, Method Man, GZA, Masta Killa, U-God
Released: March 28, 2006
Another reunion track! For Ghost’s acclaimed 2006 release, he grabbed all the Wu members and added some Ol’ Dirty vocals to make us feel warm inside. Deck as usual slays his part.
We grindin' down to the bone, my name grounded in stone I'm Mr. Violence we loungin' with chrome Mr. Violence we lounge in his home, hit the housing on Rome Shining like a hundred thousand in stones Move mountains with poems, got a jones for dinero 1-6-zero my songs we throwin' elbows The hoes cling, sho thing, we know kings Only dime dikes with minds right, we choose Queens
9. “Black Mozart”
Other rappers on the record: Raekwon
Album: Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… Pt. II
Released: September 8, 2009
Rae came back with a vengeance with his highly anticipated sequel, delivering one of the best Wu albums in recent years. Rounding up his brothers for some murderous guest verses and an A-list line-up of producers, Rae made it feel like it was 1995 all over again. Deck appeared on 3 songs (4 if you include the bonus track “Rockstars”), and he killed all 3 of them. “Black Mozart” features RZA with an intoxicating hook and Deck with a bananas flow.
Yo, I used to scramble hard, radio strapped to the handlebars Fifty deep in the lobby, large, rocking camouflage Dark Caesar holding my nuts, played the building front Fifth of Henny, throw a little snow in the blunt Just growing up, schooled by OGs, holding Os and up Daily, new drama unfold—"They popped him over what?" It's so rough—nobody know him, so what? "Ayo, the money's close by, homie, show me the stuff" Borough-hopping, copping bricks, bags, burners, and kicks City slickers, circling the strip, working them tricks Like Friday night, cruise in the coupe, new volure suit Fruit-flavored kicks, taking flicks out in 40-Deuce Farmer jeans, hammer swing, tucked in the loop How they hit Ms. Fisher, they was busting that suit Up in 54, underground, parrot and Q Made man with the grey shams, wrapping the boo Stay flam, every day, fam, stacking my loot Eighty grams in the cake, bam, packages flew Sipping passionfruit, Alizé, in back of The Ooh
8. “Cold World”
Other rappers on the record: GZA
Album: Liquid Swords
Released: November 7, 1995
Liquid Swords haunting soundscape and bleak themes served GZA well, but it also provided Deck with the perfect jump-off to deliver his sobering bars over a sample of “In The Rain” by The Dramatic. Wu-affiliate Life also provides a haunting hook to cap it off.
Yo, no time to freeze, undercovers ease up in Grand Prixs And seize packages and pocket the currency Cliques control strips, full clips are sprayed Yellow tape barricades sidewalks where bodies lay Madness strikes at twelve o’clock midnight Stick-up kids on the ground broke the staircase light And I stays harassed, scramblin' for petty cash Jakes on my ass, young bucks is learnin' fast Three-Fifteen-Sevens and Forty-Fours Bought inside corner stores, provide sparks for wars Hospital floors surrounded by the law Homicide questionin' while the Jakes guard the door My hood stay tense, loyalty puts strength in my team ‘Cause ni**as’ main concern is C.R.E.A.M Some ni**as in the jet-black Galant Shot up the Chinese restaurant for this kid named Lamont I thought he was dead, but instead, he missed the kid And hit a twelve-year-old girl in the head, and then fled Tactical narcotic task force, back off fast ‘Cause the crime boss is passin' off cash Extortions for portions of streets, causes beef Havin' followers of Indians trying to play Chief You witness the saga, casualties and drama Life is a script; I’m not an actor But the author of a modern-day opera Where the main character is presidential papers, the dominant factor
7. “Tru Master” Pete Rock – Soul Survivor
Other rappers on the record: Pete Rock, Kurupt
Album: Soul Survivor
Released: November 10, 1998
Pete Rock’s ’98 debut album, Soul Survivor, is so fucking dope and just keeps getting better as time goes on. The line up of high calibre MCs rapping over Pete Rock production is bananas: Inspectah Deck, Kurupt, Method Man, O.C., Raekwon, Prodigy, Ghostface, Large Professor, Kool G Rap, Black Thought, MC Eiht, Big Pun, Common, and more.
In fact, the line up of MCs was too dope, it made Pete Rock’s verses sound redundant at times — did we really need him to close off “The Game” following Rae, Prodigy and Ghost? Probably not. First to set the album off, as always, Inspectah Deck.
Your highness, live from the bricks, one-six Pete Rock bang your head, break the drumsticks Verbal assault, rhymes rippin' through the mix Specialist, with the smash hits, catch the flick Savagely attack this, clash with accurate aim Spark the flame, burn this inside and pop a vein Ride tracks like the Soul Train, hold ya brain In the state of shock, make 'em drop, it's a cold game I bang with the big boys, those who hold names Amateurs get hung with they own gold chains I swing blades, best bring grenades against A Tru Master, way beyond your freshman attempts Spit rounds on the floor, evidence of the war It's on 'til the death, 'til we settle the score You can never measure, to the standard Of the most popular demanded, rap classic Pop corks while the style knock your socks off Ghetto summer jam's got the streets blocked off Plots to knock me off get stopped short Armed with my thoughts, move the world with an unknown force
6. “Tres Leches (Triboro Trilogy)”
Other rappers on the record: Big Pun, Prodigy
Album: Capital Punishment
Released: April 28, 1998
It doesn’t get much more lyrical than this. Big Pun, Prodigy and Inspectah Deck spitting murderous bars over an eerie RZA production. ’90s hip hop heads fainted when they first heard this joint. Not much more to say about it, dope dope dope.
Fake one, take one, no ultimatum, face one There's no escape from Straight from the grain come the great one My blade swung, decapitate your snake head Slit your snake tongue, make one false maneuver - you a mystery Unsolved, the mob that revolves automatically involved Musclebound sounds surround commercial thugs Rock turtledove Bowery suits and purple gloves Me and you can have some fun, make it a blast You couldn't take the impact with steel shoulder pads Blood for blood, veteran covered in mud Wounded in the midst of war, still tradin' slugs, gettin' major love Way above you newcomers I come thunderin' with the heat of two summers When I enter the zone, move mountains with the presence alone Before the words rip through the microphone Chrome dipped lyrics are known to split stone You privatize, home in but can't seem to clone
5. “Assassination Day”
Other rappers on the record: RZA, Raekwon, Masta Killa
Released: October 18, 1996
Ironman was a Ghostface album which at times felt like a Wu Tang project, it wasn’t until 2000’s Supreme Clientele, where Ghost fully came into his own as a solo artist. On this project, he was overshadowed by his crew members; by Cappadonna on “Winter Warz,” Rae on “Daytona 500” and “Motherless Child” and Deck on “Assassination Day” (which oddly enough Ghost didn’t even appear on).
I move through the Third World, my third eye's the guiding light Invite the fight, we all die tonight The life I live's a 25 to life bid Parole reneged, I stroll the globe fugitive Cream is short, Cee Cipher Power stalk, plus the fiend talk 3 Gs the cost in Supreme Court White lies and blackmail land me back in jail We're all for sale, a stolen goal but it fail Stranded on the front line, I shine to the dumb and blind It comes time I take back what was once mine Crunch time in the first quarter, from the worst slaughter Devil's poisoning the birth water The earth daughter rest her head on my chest Through the struggle we cuddle under half-moon crest While the press plant fear and exploit the gun blasting Central broadcasting is shackling, nerves are unfastened Trapped in deep water, gasping I clash with the titans for my half on the action
4. “House of Flying Daggers”
Other rappers on the record: Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, Method Man
Album: Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… Pt. II
Released: September 8, 2009
How fitting that the first verse on Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… Pt. II is not from Rae, but Deck. Even as important as this project was to him, Chef knew that there’s only one rapper who can set it off in the right way.
I pop off like a mobster boss Angel hair with the lobster sauce Summertime, can't top the scorch Check my hot broad, I dropped the Porsche FBI wanna watch the force, tryna lock my source Where I'm from—hear the macs, Tecs, Glocks and fours Hide the safe, ni**a, lock the doors No respect for the cops and laws In the land where your own blood brother still plot for yours Seen things that'll drop your jaw My soldiers got dropped in war See the mural on the project wall? Won't stop til I cop them all Wanna block me? You gots to brawl, trade shots and all 'Cause I ain't on the clock for talk The spot rusher, blow down the spot for sure Still break off the block with raw, my stock is more The General: watch your board
3. “Above the Clouds”
Other rappers on the record: Guru
Album: Moment of Truth
Released: March 31, 1998
’98 was a killer year for Deck. Fresh off murdering “Triumph” and an assortment of songs on Wu-Tang Forever, Deck made the rounds for guest verses, popping up with Pun, Pete Rock, Kurupt, and of course, the one and only Gang Starr. This is probably the most well known Deck guest verses, as well as one of Premo’s best beats.
Yeah, I leave scientists mentally scarred, triple extra large Wild like rock stars who smash guitars Poison bars from the Gods bust holes in your mirage And catch a charge, shake 'em down like the riot squad Invade your zone, ruin like Ancient Rome I span the universe and return to Earth to claim my throne The maker, owner, plus soul controller Ayatollah rest in the sky, the cloud's my sofa Stand like Colossus, regardless to whom or what Numerous attempts on my life, so who to trust? Who but us to supply ya with the fire? The burnin' truth, 150 Absolut proof On the mic like Moses spoke in golden scribe Survivor of the oldest tribe whose soldiers died I notified families, we shed tears and mourn But our hands are on the ammo 'cause the battle still on Sound the horn, we come rumblin' through the function Precise laser beam technique to touch somethin' When we die hard, they'll build a monument to honor us with Humongous effect in the world, we could've conquered it
2. “Duel of the Iron Mic”
Other rappers on the record: GZA, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Masta Killa
Album: Liquid Swords
Released: November 7, 1995
“Duel of the Iron Mic” by intents and purposes was a GZA, but in the same way Kanye set up “Mercy” so 2 Chainz could steal the show, RZA set up this song for Deck to steal the show, breaking down the beat and letting the Rebel INS let loose with his verse. This is prime, hungry Deck with killer instincts.
Adults kill for drugs plus the young bucks bust Ducking handcuffs, throats get cut when dough rush Out of town foes look shook but still pose We move like real pros through the streets we stroll Bullet holes lace the windows in one-six-oh So control the avenues that's the dream that's sold Building lobbies are graveyards for small-timers Bitches caught in airports, keys in they vaginas No peace, yo the police mad corrupt You get bagged up, depending if you're passing the cut Plus shorty's not a shorty no more, he's living heartless Regardless of the charges, claims to be the hardest Individual, critical thoughts, criminal minded Blinded by illusion, finding it confusing
1. “Guillotine (Swordz)”
Other rappers on the record: Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, GZA
Album: Only Built 4 Cuban Linx…
Released: August 1, 1995
In my humble opinion, Deck’s verse on this song is right up there with “Triumph.” Featured on Rae’s magnum opus Purple Tape, Deck was lined up alongside Raekwon, GZA, Ghostface Killah and he blew them all away with the first verse.
Poisonous paragraphs smash your phonograph in half It be the Inspectah Deck on the warpath First class, leavin' mics with a cast Causin' ruckus like the aftermath when guns blast Run fast, here comes the verbal assaulter Rhymes runnin' wild like a child in a walker I scored from the inner slums abroad And my thoughts are razor sharp, I slice the mic from the cord First to criticize, but now they have become Mentally paralyzed with hits that I devise Now I testify, the best is I Rebel INS, Your Highness, blessed to electrify With voltage of a eel, truth that I reveal Will crush the amateurs who scream they keep it real Caesar black down, hoodied up in fatigues Part time minor leagues receive third degrees Attack like a wolf pack once I pull back The God-U and bust through like a fullback