Guess it’s safe to say, Cruel Summer is the most polarizing release of the year. Ha! Shit, I enjoyed it especially the final iTunes mastered version. Yeah Kanye made us wait til the fall for this compilation and released most of the best records first (“Mercy”, “New God Flow”, “Don’t Like”, “Clique”) but there was still new tunes to enjoy. Who can resist Ye charmingly boasting alongside fellow Chi-town Hall Of Famer, R. Kelly on “To The World”? But the heart of the album contains effective but bizarre collabo combinations. Raekwon, Common, Pusha T, 2 Chainz, and CyHi The Prynce shine on “The Morning” and The-Dream, Pusha T, and Mase zone out on “Higher”. Marsha Ambrosius’ hook on “The One” sounds like it belongs on a DJ Khaled album but Mr. West makes the tune his own (“You think you’re me?/But you ain’t me/What you done lately?). It’s a bummer if you don’t dig Cruel Summer.
Friday, January 11 2013 12:00 PM EST | Posted by: Big Homie | Posted in: Album Reviews, Blog
With his critically-acclaimed Dreamchasers mixtapes under his belt, Meek Mill carried over the success to his much-anticipated album, Dreams & Nightmares. We’ve all heard the prison walls to the hall of fame storyline repeatedly, but no one this year told it quite like Meek Mill. The title track rolls out his journey from the gutters of the Philly to the exotic penthouse suites. Meek continues his murderous tale (“Tony Story Pt. 2″), watches jealousy turn friends to strangers (“Who You Around”, “Polo & Shell Tops”) and even ponders sweet revenge on his father’s murder (“Traumatized”). Keeping that MMG signature sound, Ross joins him on the flashy “Believe It” and returns with Nas and John Legend on the luxurious “Maybach Curtains”. Despite the dark and street-driving records, radio praised the Drake-assisted “Amen” and even the auto-tune infested “Young & Gettin’ It”. For those who’ve been inspired, this is what dreams are truly made of.
Friday, January 11 2013 10:00 AM EST | Posted by: Big Homie | Posted in: Album Reviews, Blog
Since the release of the first installment, Self Made, the Bawse added a few new recruits to his untouchable empire. Stalley brings his A game to the table. The Ohio rhyme slinger purifies hustling tales with Nipsey Hussle on “Fountain of Youth” and his opening verse reaches the highest point on “The Zenith”. The latest addition, Omarion woos the ladies on “Let’s Talk” and juggles them on “M.I.A.” In addition to Rozay’s superb ear for production, he also knows how to bring those outside the family in to help produce a cohesive compilation. Kendrick Lamar closes out “Power Circle” with force. Nas coasts with ease of a don on “This Thing Of Ours” and T.I. comes out swinging on “Bury Me A G”. The Teflon Don and his platoon prove for the second time around why MMG is at the forefront of the rap game. Until next time.
You wanna be one of the illest MCs? Well go out there and prove it. On your own. Then get with 3 other ill MCs and prove it. On y’all own. Then maybe you’ll get signed by one of the greatest MCs. Eminem is all over Slaughterhouse’s Shady debut and he ain’t got no worries. After spitting alongside the crew on the title track, Marshall gets raunchy on “Throw That” and goes crazy on “Asylum”. But it’s Joe Budden, Royce da 5’9″, Joell Ortiz and Crooked I that are still the true stars here. They stomp in on the exciting “Hammer Dance”, shake the woofers on “Get Up” and pour out their souls on the album’s best moment, “Goodbye”. You wanna shine on the mic device? Well there’s strength in numbers, muthafuckas.
Thursday, January 10 2013 6:16 PM EST | Posted by: B.Dot | Posted in: Album Reviews, Blog
Chief Keef is a terrible rapper. After signing to Interscope in June, he released his debut Finally Rich six months later. Aside from Young Chop’s production (“Love Sosa”, “I Don’t Like” ) Finally Rich is sonically bankrupt. Throughout the project, Keef’s incoherent (“Kay Kay”, “Laughin To The Bank”) and incomprehensible (“No Tomorrow”, “Understand Me”, “Citgo”). When he’s not not rapping in fragments (“Hate Bein’ Sober”), the closest he comes to articulating a sentence is on the title track, “Finally Rich”. Money can’t buy happiness, but at least it’ll help pay for a ghostwriter.
Previously: #5 Diggy Unexpected Arrival l #4 Azealia Banks 1991 l #3 Ja Rule PIL 2 l #2 Kreayshawn Somethin’ ‘Bout Kreay
Thursday, January 10 2013 6:00 PM EST | Posted by: Big Homie | Posted in: Album Reviews, Blog
Bandz will certainly make her dance, but it was Juicy J’s stripper anthem that kept the pussies poppin’ on a handstand. Embedded over Mike Will Made It’s hypnotic beat, Juicy J opens up the track and even welcomes the ratchet ones (“You say no to ratchet pussy, Juicy J can’t”). As a frequent customer at King of Diamonds, Tunechi even serenades Big Booty Judy (“What’s ya real name, and not your stripper name?”). But when it was all said and
done spent, it was 2 Chainz energetic delivery that gets the standing ovation (“Pocket full of money, money! Young nigga getting head while the engine running”). Claps all around. Literally.
Previously: #10 Lupe Fiasco “Bitch Bad” l #9 E-40 Ft. YG, iamSu & Problem “Function” l #8 Future “Same Damn Time” l #7 Meek Mill x Drake “Amen” l #6 G.O.O.D. Music “Mercy” l #5 2 Chainz x Drake “No Lie” l #4 French Montana Ft. Rick Ross, Drake & Lil Wayne “Pop That” l #3 Nas “Daughters” l #2 Rick Ross Ft. Drake x French Montana “Stay Schemin“
Thursday, January 10 2013 5:30 PM EST | Posted by: Big Homie | Posted in: Album Reviews, Blog
Surprise surprise, Kreayshawn finds herself back on one of our “Worst” lists. Her signature single “Gucci Gucci” may have caught millions of views on the Tube as well as gotten her a deal with Sony, but the end result of her debut album was very painful to sit through in its entirety. Only good thing here is DJ Two Stacks’ production on “Summertime” and “Left Ey3″ but not even a KiD Cudi hook (“Like It Or Love It”) nor 2 Chainz’ assistance (“Breakfast (Syrup)”) could have given this project a pulse. “The Ruler” contains horrific and embarrassing lyrics. The hook for “K234ys0nixz” is disturbing. Plus, the Oakland femcee makes matters worse on the Pop-ish records “BFF (Best Friend)” and the closing track “Luv Haus”. Ah, finally it’s over!
Thursday, January 10 2013 5:00 PM EST | Posted by: YN | Posted in: Album Reviews, Blog
Kurtis Blow wrote the hook. Nas flipped it. And French Montana sold it. It’s an undisputed fact that Rick Ross’ Rich Forever single set hip-hop 2012 off and even ignited a beef with Drake and Common. Y’all know how we feel about Drizzy’s performance but Frenchie’s verse was also noteable since folks struggled to comprehend his opening bars. Fanute? “From the hoopty coupe to the ghost dawg.” I ride for Rozay and producer Beat Bully’s smash. Salute!
Thursday, January 10 2013 4:30 PM EST | Posted by: YN | Posted in: Album Reviews, Blog
Eight long years. Eight long years. Released during his current incarceration for gun possession and tax evasion, PIL 2 was Ja Rule’s first album since 2004′s R.U.L.E. Damn, that’s hard to believe. Ja decided to stick to the old script and re-connect with producer Aurelius Seven who handled the entire project. Too bad this beatmaker has lost his touch. Even the somewhat enjoyable opener “Real Life Fantasty”, where Ja laments the loss of fellow Murder Inc. artists, sounds too choppy. Still Ja’s not excused as his lyrical content is pretty boring. “Black Vodka” has no flavor. “Drown” is dreadful. And “Superstar” is more crossover pop slop. How dare Ruleski disrespect his 2001 triple platinum masterwork? This sequel stinks.
Thursday, January 10 2013 4:00 PM EST | Posted by: B.Dot | Posted in: Album Reviews, Blog
Nas’ seed is a big girl now. And for his single “Daughters”, he reflects on his own child’s growth and development. Backed by No I.D.’s soul samples, Esco evaluates his parenting skills with honesty (“Plus she’s seen me switching women, pops was on some pimp shit”), confusion (“One day she’s ya little princess, next day she talking boy business”) and even a lil’ regret (“I’m too loose, I’m too cool with her”). Carmen would disagree, but hey, father knows best.