Wrath of the Math

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Wrath of the Math
Jeru The Damaja Album Wrath of the Math.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 15, 1996
GenreEast Coast hip hop
LabelPayday/FFRR/PolyGram Records
124 119 (U.S.)
828 846 (international)
ProducerDJ Premier
Jeru the Damaja chronology
The Sun Rises in the East
Wrath of the Math

Wrath of the Math is the second album by the hip hop artist Jeru the Damaja. The album spawned the 2 singles "Ya Playin' Yaself" and "Me or the Papes". The album peaked at number 3 on the US Top R&B/Hip Hop Albums, and number 35 on the US Billboard 200.

Album information[edit]

The album was completely produced by DJ Premier and continues the themes of Afrocentricity, preserving hip-hop culture, and more about the harms of materialism that were discussed on The Sun Rises in the East.

In its liner notes, it even says, "This album was created to SAVE hip-hop and the minds of the people who listen to it."[1] One significant track that intends to uphold Jeru's vision of hip hop is "One Day", where he tells a story of Puff Daddy, Foxy Brown and Bad Boy Records kidnapping somebody named Hip-Hop.[1] The Notorious B.I.G. took offense to the song, as he was signed to Bad Boy Records, and was closely connected with Puff Daddy and Foxy Brown. Biggie retaliated by throwing subtle jabs at Jeru in the song "Kick in the Door" (which was aimed at other rap artists as well). The track "Me or the Papes" contains aim for Puff Daddy, Jeru stating, "My name ain't Puff, I ain't got loot to waste", to which Puff Daddy did not respond.

It contains many tracks that are sequels to songs on Jeru's first album such as "Revenge of the Prophet (Part 5)", "Me or the Papes" and "Physical Stamina", featuring Afu-Ra, the one guest emcee, as he was on Jeru's first album.


Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic link
Robert Christgau(1-star Honorable Mention) link
Entertainment WeeklyB+ link
RapReviews(9/10) link
The Source[citation needed]

The album was well-received, but was not as critically acclaimed as his first album. John Bush of Allmusic was one of the few critics who felt that it was just as strong as Jeru's first album.[2]

Entertainment Weekly: "Combined with DJ Premier's head-bobbing minimalist funk, Jeru tells it like it is like no other."[3]

Vibe: "Armed with a prophet's sense of social responsibility, Webster's vocab, and the best beats in the business.... Jeru's at his best...when he fights playa-ism with its most potent weapon: sharply visual, action-packed narrative."[4]

The Source: 3 Mics: Good—"Returning with an unabashed intolerance for the artistic moves of some well-known rap figures...Jeru the Damaja proves that his musical compositions are too mentally stimulating to be ignored."[5]

Melody Maker: Ranked #43 on Melody Maker's 1996 list of Albums of the Year.[6]

Track listing[edit]

# Title Songwriters Performer (s)
1 "Wrath of the Math" K.J. Davis, C. Martin *Interlude*
2 "Tha Frustrated Nigga" (previously featured on Pump Ya Fist (Hip Hop Inspired By The Black Panthers)) K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
3 "Black Cowboys" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
4 "Tha Bullshit" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
5 "Whatever" K.J. Davis, C. Martin, M. Small Jr. Jeru the Damaja
6 "Physical Stamina" K.J. Davis, A. Phillips, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja, Afu-Ra
7 "One Day" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
8 "Revenge of the Prophet (Part 5)" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
9 "Scientifical Madness" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
10 "Not the Average" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
11 "Me or the Papes" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
12 "How I'm Livin'" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
13 "Too Perverted" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
14 "Ya Playin' Yaself" K.J. Davis, C. Martin Jeru the Damaja
15 "Invasion" (previously featured on New Jersey Drive, Vol. 2) K.J. Davis, C. Martin, C. Mayfield Jeru the Damaja

Album singles[edit]

"Ya Playin' Yaself"
  • Released: September 23, 1996
  • B-side: "One Day"
"Me or the Papes"
  • Released: March 11, 1997
  • B-side: "Tha Bullshit," "Me, Not the Paper"

Album chart positions[edit]

Chart (1996) Peak
UK Albums (OCC)[7] 79
US Billboard 200[8] 35
US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[9] 3

Singles chart positions[edit]

Year Song Chart positions
Hot 100
Hot R&B/
Hip-Hop Singles
& Tracks
Hot Rap
Hot Dance Music/
Maxi-Singles Sales
1996 Ya Playin' Yaself - 57 20 6 1996 One Day - 89 1 -
1997 Me or the Papes 99 78 2 26


  1. ^ a b "Wrath of the Math at CDUniverse.com". Retrieved December 20, 2006.
  2. ^ "Wrath of the Math". Allmusic. Retrieved December 6, 2006.
  3. ^ Matt Diehl, "Wrath of the Math", Entertainment Weekly January 10, 1997, p.58)
  4. ^ Vibe, November 1996, p. 153
  5. ^ The Source, November 1996, p. 132
  6. ^ Melody Maker, December 21–28, 1996, pp. 66–67
  7. ^ "Jeru The Damaja | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart.
  8. ^ "Jeru The Damaja Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard.
  9. ^ "Jeru The Damaja Chart History (Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums)". Billboard.