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Five Spot: Whatever Happened to Z-Ro's New Album? Well, We'll Tell You...

Welcome back to The Five Spot. Every Friday, we'll examine a recent bit of music news and list five reasons why it's either brilliant or dumb-assed. Send tips to [email protected].

Okay, let's get you all caught up.

Back at the end of the summer, word spread that Z-Ro had been jumped outside of Houston's classy, classy hangout High Rollers. We were hesitant to believe it happened at first, because how does someone even go about beating up a nightmare, but Ro later put up a video on YouTube speaking on the incident.

Shortly thereafter, an email appeared in our inbox from ***** explaining that the attack (presumably) had come at the hands of a Rap-A-Lot goon squad and occurred because some remarks made by Z-Ro in a previous interview re: the label and his album's still-unreleased status were taken to be disrespectful. This was verified on numerous message boards, the same message boards that also "verified" that Z-Ro had been killed on two previous occasions, mind you, so make of that what you will.

Here's the fun part though: The album at the center of all of this is Heroin, Ro's perpetually postponed follow-up to last year's Crack. Wednesday afternoon, a picture of someone holding an album titled Cocaine started popping up on the internet (if there were a Google Trends: Down South Edition, there is no doubt Z-Ro fodder would clog up at least 17 of the top 20 spots daily).

The rumor now is that Ro has apparently become so disenfranchised with Rap-A-Lot that he or someone close to him has pressed his own copies of Heroin and is offering them under the new name.

There are a bunch of different explanations for this "new album." Actually, there are five.

First is that an angel descended from the Heavens, bypassing the unholy grip of Rap-A-Lot to deliver us this new gospel from our True Hero Under God. It was placed in the hands of a blind man (who promptly became double-blind on account of how amazing it was) and he is the man pictured holding the CD. This seems the most plausible.

"It seem like Rap-A-Lot ain't comin' up with the change/ Ain't that a bitch/ Ever since 2004 I was supposed to be rich."

The second explanation is that it's true, and that is totally not unreasonable. We went through some transcribed notes from a previous interview and saw that a RAL employee told us that Heroin was all ready for release, they were just waiting on the CD art to arrive - that interview was almost three months ago. Even we're frustrated at this point, and we want to spend money on it. That feeling has to be magnified about a bazillion times if you're the guy who's going to make money off of it.

Third is that it's just a repackaged version of the fabled Cracc mixtape - which was originally meant to augment Crack - and the title has just been changed so it will complement Heroin instead. Logistically, this is entirely reasonable, but in practice it's the unlikeliest explanation. Anyone who was going to buy Cracc back when the title was timely would not have decided otherwise because of the foolhardy concept of timeliness. Fuck timeliness. The only concept recognized in the minds of Z-Ro fans is stab-you-in-the-heart-iness.

The fourth explanation, the worst case scenario, is that this is just some fan art thrown in a CD case. There is no new Z-Ro music, official or otherwise, on the horizon. This was posted to the internet for no other reason than because the Lord hates us. We pray with all of our heart (and both of our hands, but mostly with our heart) that this isn't the case.

The fifth explanation is that this is all some elaborate plan, brilliantly concocted and implemented by the rap game's Napoleon Bonaparte, J. Prince. In an attempt to rehash the visceral yet vulnerable fury that Ro perfected on 2005's Let the Truth Be Told, Prince decided to do everything possible to piss Ro off in the hopes that it will manifest itself in a reincarnation of the album (they'd probably call it Let the Truth Be Retold; Rap-A-Lot has always been terrible at naming albums).

If successful, this would pretty much render all past artist-to-label grievances obsolete. Prince could play the "No, I Wasn't Trying To Dick You Over, I Was Just Trying To Bring The Best Out Of You Just Like I Did For Z-Ro" card. This should be referred to as the "Yeah Fucking Right" plan, or the "If This Proves To Be True, I'll Eat My Own Fist" plan.

Thanks for your support. Have a safe weekend.

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Shea Serrano