Fishscale - Ghostface Killah
Metascore
88

Universal acclaim - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 32
  2. Negative: 0 out of 32
  1. Sure, Fishscale has its share of pointless skits. But that's what the fast-forward button is for, just as the play button seems to have been designed specifically to let people listen to Fishscale over and over again.
  2. This is Ghostface's best album.
  3. The stories are as vivid, brutal, and thought-out as any noir.
  4. He may not be reinventing himself, but as a must-hear street storyteller, he's still at the top of his game. [31 Mar 2006, p.64]
  5. Fishscale intermingles skewed narratives, expert guest choices, exquisitely conflicting production, and a concept and focus—the drug trade is the near exclusive subject mater—that, while somewhat reductive in scope, sharpens the album into an immense, furious, and focused album.
  6. 91
    Toning down his oddball style and ramping up his storytelling, he drops a pusher’s odyssey as developed and cinematic as any Scorsese joint.
  7. Overall, "Fishscale" is strong, with archetypal beats creating the definitive Ghost. [1 Apr 2006]
  8. Fishscale reiterates with cinematic verve that the most vital current Wu Tang Clan member's storytelling can match Biggie's in both excitement and humor. Yet Ghost's songs are unrelenting in their slavishness to density and credibility, and that can turn off casual listeners even as it intoxicates hip-hop purists.
  9. The scenarios he recounts are as detailed and off-the-wall as ever, elaborate screenplays laid out with a vocal style that's ceaselessly fluid and never abrasive.
  10. I'd be surprised if anybody, in any field, drops something this potent in the next nine months.
  11. "Fishscale" is a purist's delight, an album seemingly crafted solely for those who've been chasing his maverick tail for the past decade.
  12. Ghost's Fishscale is the most creative album to come out of New York hiphop since his own 2000 Supreme Clientele.
  13. Ghost is at the top of his game, both in terms of flow and lyrical luminosity.
  14. This will most likely be the best hip-hop album of the year as well as a contender for best overall album of the year.
  15. He remains rap's finest storyteller. [Jun 2006, p.115]
  16. Will certainly stand as one of the best rap albums of the year. [26 Mar 2006]
  17. Ghost continues his tradition of being the Wu's most consistant soloist.
  18. It isn’t the street rap of Ironman, it isn’t an exercise in abstract lyricism akin to Supreme Clientele, or the partially-focused and repeatedly disappointing Bulletproof Wallets. Regardless of that, the album captures exactly that Ghostface Killah is and has been over his past four records.
  19. Another great release from the most important emcee in hip-hop.
  20. This album doesn't match the weird, woozy brilliance of "Supreme Clientele," from 2000, and there are a few too many guest verses from rappers who don't come close to upstaging their host. Still, this might surpass his 2004 CD, "The Pretty Toney Album," though it's too early to tell: when you get a new Ghostface Killah album, the only reasonable reaction is to get lost in it. [27 Mar 2006]
  21. Ghostface's emotionally charged stream-of-consciousness flow is as off-the-wall and amazing as it's ever been.
  22. 80
    Strange, spooky and brilliant. [Apr 2006, p.114]
  23. 80
    The sample-heavy results are cohesive yet diverse, a proper canvas for Ghost's finest effort since Supreme Clientele. [Apr 2006, p.151]
  24. This is his best since [Supreme Clientele].
  25. On balance, Fishscale earns its street-cred stripes and adds another worthy release to the Great Wu-Tang Best Solo Effort debate.
  26. 80
    Frankly, this record makes me wish I could snort bass lines through my ear holes. [Apr 2006, p.84]
  27. Fishscale owes a large part of its success to Ghostface’s vivid storytelling.
  28. 80
    A couple of missteps aside, this is Ghost's best since that '96 debut, Ironman. [Jun 2006, p.102]
  29. 80
    Delivers a top-grade high. [Jun 2006, p.104]
  30. Ghostface is in typically brutal form.
  31. Fishscale is a confusing journey: far from a disappointment, it breathes new life into the legacy of Ghostface without blowing too hard, and for that we should be thankful. But to champion his latest as equal or, god forbid, superior to past albums in any way, shape, or form is laughable, as years-removed and repeated listens will bear out.
  32. Fishscale's tail-end reeks ("Jellyfish," "Big Girl," "Momma"), but then first cuts are always the deepest.
User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 86 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 51 out of 55
  2. Negative: 3 out of 55
  1. DaveNobody
    May 1, 2006
    9
    I understand a couple of tracks had to be added to sell records, but even they are better than most of this Nelly and Chamillionaire crap I understand a couple of tracks had to be added to sell records, but even they are better than most of this Nelly and Chamillionaire crap that folks are passing off as Hip-Hop these days Full Review »
  2. Sep 29, 2014
    10
    Cinematic classic. That's all you need to know about this album. Wow is this ever an epic album both in length and quality. It's one ofCinematic classic. That's all you need to know about this album. Wow is this ever an epic album both in length and quality. It's one of those rare albums that takes many listens to understand and being to enjoy but once you understand it you never ever go back. Full Review »
  3. May 12, 2011
    9
    this is for black people. i loved this album it was rocking and slamming. ghostface knows how to throw down. it was a good album. butthis is for black people. i loved this album it was rocking and slamming. ghostface knows how to throw down. it was a good album. but Iron Man and bulletproof wallets will be his 2 best albums. Full Review »