The Seventh Seal, Rakim's third solo studio album, was originally slated for release in 2002, but it was delayed initially when Rakim, then on Dr. Dre's Aftermath label, cited creative differences. Fans had hoped that The Seventh Seal would drop on July 7, 2007, but the date came and went.
Now, ten years after his second studio LP, The Master, it seems The Seventh Seal is fit for release. Speaking to Billboard about the title's signifigance, Rakim said, "The seventh letter of the alphabet is G -- that stands for God. There are seven continents, seven seas. The 'seventh seal' deals with that and also some revelations in the Bible. Some call it the end of the world, but for me it's the end of the old and the beginning of the new. By me naming my album that, I'm using it metaphorically in hip-hop. I'm hoping to kill the old state of hip-hop and start with the new."
Biblical prophecy, the death and rebirth of hip-hop, and numerology. The Seventh Seal is looking to be a pretty low-key, unambitious affair, don't you think?