Editors’ Notes Released when Esham was still a 16-year-old student at Detroit’s Osborn High School, Boomin’ Words from Hell is one of rap music’s most audacious debuts. Written, produced, and performed entirely by Esham (real name: Rashaam Attica Smith), the album is a stunning fusion of biting New York street hip-hop and the rapper’s self-styled “acid rap.” The lyrical content presents a vision of inner-city Detroit that is as detailed as it is harrowing. “No one scares me, no one dares me,” he spits on “Esham’s Boomin’,” “Shoot a brother in the back for crack 'cause no one cares, see." Esham told an interviewer in 2008, "It was all an expression about ('70s-'80s drug cartel) Young Boys Incorporated, Mayor Coleman Young, the city we lived in and just the turmoil that our city was going through at the time.” Esham’s flow is knife-sharp and he made beats to match. Blending live instrumentation with samples, the music is primitive but sophisticated. Even as a youngster he was taking risks with his music, and though it's connected to rap music from New York, the Bay Area, and the South, Boomin’ Words from Hell is at once outside its time and way ahead of it.