Editors’ NotesUnpredictable was a perfect title for a Mystikal album. Few rappers could take a song—or even a single verse—in as many directions as he could. His career got a huge boost when he signed with the hugely successful No Limit label in 1997; it's amazing to think that an album as uncompromising as Unpredictable made it to No. 3 on the Billboard 200. Mystikal’s raps were the perfect match for the tracks from Beats by the Pound (No Limit’s in-house production team), which by 1997 had perfected the template for beats that were tense, stealthy, and highly volatile. As was typical for the era, the album is padded with stellar cameos from the No Limit family, but the intensity level goes through the roof whenever Mystikal raps. His rhymes have the unpredictability of stream-of-consciousness writing, yet are delivered with the rapid-fire precision of an airplane propeller. Bizarre and adrenalized, the whole album is singularly creative, but beginners might want to start with “13 Years,” a piece of '70s funk warped and intensified.
Born 2 Be a Soldier (feat. Master P & Silkk the Shocker)