The biggest mistake you could make is dismissing this tribute to Jay Z’s “Reasonable Doubt” as Hova Karaoke. Brooklyn MC Skyzoo and producer/composer Antman Wonder got together to fulfill a fan wish for Sky to do a tribute to Jay’s classic debut. In a similar vein to Elzhi’s “Elmatic” tribute to Nas’s “Illmatic” where Will Sessions recreated the music from scratch, Antman recreated the original beats from “Reasonable…” with live string sections, horns, etc, while lyrically it’s written from the perspective of Sky placing himself in the emotions that Jay displayed on the original, but from his point of view, as opposed to reinterpreting Jay’s life.
“For me, Reasonable Doubt was and is one of the most cohesive bodies of work in hip hop, period,” says Skyzoo. “The way Jay painted exactly what that side of the fence was, from the highs and celebrations, to the lows and worried phone calls, to the emotions of someone truly with the weight of the world on their shoulders. It was as honest and clear cut as you can get. As a fan it made me wanna learn every word, and as an artist it further shaped my storytelling and approach to writing.”
Antman Wonder recalls the album having a similar impact in his life. “Reasonable Doubt further defined Hip-Hop for me,” he explains. “It came out at a time where street rap was grimy and visceral; and then came RD, which was cinematic and ironically eloquent in its own way. The production staff on it was legendary and it helped shape the way I approach music.”
They released a video for the lead single “Meeting The Presidents” shot on the roof of 560 State Street and across from Barclays Center.