The Lox – Filthy America…It’s Beautiful Review

This release starts off strong with all three members having strong verses, but some safe choices later can make a full listen through disappointing. Some of the more mainstream options takes this edge off this gritty album that could have been solid without them.

The production is good with the right atmosphere on every track helping to make this have more of an impact. While some of the beats are perfect for the group, the attempt to seem more radio friendly makes the group seem like they are trying to grow their audience. However by doing this they may have lost some of the core group that liked their old stuff. By sticking to what they know, they may have created a more cohesive project.

The lyricism is fantastic with all three members trying hard to be the best. They also try hard at the performance aspect with their individual delivery making the tracks stand out slightly. On the downside, the hooks are not as hard hitting as the verses and can be repetitive in places. While there are no major works to be done, this is not a totally smooth ride.

The features are the weakest part of this release because they don’t necessarily fit with the style of the group. While none do particularly badly, some do not gel with the chemistry of the group and sound a little out of place. Some singers would have been a better way to show the softer side than radio attempts.

Overall, this is an enjoyable release if you can sit through the few rough patches. Sheek Louch, Styles P and Jadakiss should be proud of their individual performances as well as how they work as a team.

Lloyd Banks – Halloween Havoc 3 Review

This project shows that Lloyd Banks can still write absolute bars and that people should respect his name. This themed project doesn’t do the man justice, but is still a great listen.

The production is different, while the more horror-core influence to fit with the Halloween name. The use of darker sounds makes a great atmosphere but sounds like there could be something missing as it doesn’t have the high impact that makes it resonate with the listener. Maybe with a different or no theme, Banks could make some tracks to land harder with the listener.

The lyricism is gold with Banks showing why some call him the Punch Line King. His rhymes are all complex and full of top level wordplay that leaves the audience wanting more. His delivery can come across as monotone and his hooks need a little spicing up, but he is definitely one of the best writers out there right now.

Overall this is a great themed listen for Halloween, but much like Halloween it wont be around very long. However with no features it should show any rap fan that Lloyd Banks should be remembered for how well he writes rather than as simply a member of G-unit.

Prodigy – Untitled EP Review

This EP is actually an impressive blend of EDM and tough raps. Prodigy is one of the more successful crossovers to do this because he doesn’t try and keep pace with the backing and simply stays himself.

The production is interesting with the pace up and the instruments being more of a focal point. Each could hold their own as an EDM track and are plenty entertaining. It will be interesting to see if this style will make an impression in Hip Hop.

The lyricism is great, where used. Prodigy keeps his skills sharp and demonstrates that on each track. He may not be filling the songs with rhymes, but when he uses his voice, it always helps and doesn’t sound out of place. He works well with this style of music and hopefully he will continue to work with it.

Overall, this is an enjoyable EP of a relatively fresh crossover style. Prodigy should be commended for putting out his first attempt out and for having such entertaining songs.

Mobb Deep – Survival Of The Fittest EP Review

This is a great testament to the longevity of Mobb Deep as they use a remix of thier classic song for the NBA and to make a great EP around it. Havoc and Prodigy both do good work on here to create a good EP.

The production is excellent and speaks right to the core audiance of Mobb Deep. Each track is individual with a big case for being either a future, and in one case currant, classic. They may want to try something a bit further out of thier wheelhouse so that they dont get stuck in a rutt. However if what they are doing is working, dont change it.

The lyricism is good and helps keep that classic Mobb Deep sheen over the project. While it is not the best lyrical performance in the rap game, the delivery adds impact and they aren’t slouches. It is true that a few more complex rhymes could show that they are still growing as a group but they have lasted a long time doing this and clearly know what they are doing.

Overall, this is a good EP that helps to show that Mobb Deep still have the skills to not only be in Hip Hop, but to be solid and still be able to make songs that everyone can enjoy.

Mobb Deep – The Infamous Mobb Deep Review

This is a hardcore Mobb Deep album. Everything about it just screams about it linking with the Mobb Deep debut. The double disc LP has everything you would expect from Havoc and Prodigy with some wonderful little twists.

The production is perfectly fitting for their rap styles and is enticing for the listener when combined with it. The production itself sounds gritty and adds to the ambiance of each track without smothering the lyricism.

Both Prodigy and Havoc do well on the album lyrically and stand out from each other and their guests. The features are also very coherrant and only improves each track. The subject matter doesn’t stray far from the Mobb Deep formula of street life, drugs and women, however the production level and fresh angles keep the listener interested through a lot of tracks.

The album does run for a long time, as it is a double disc release, and can become stale. On the other hand, the fact the first disc is made up of new material and the second disc is tracks from 1994 (when they were making their debut album) helps break the monotony and keep the listener interested.

Overall, this is a good album that is showing Mobb Deep at a strong point after their falling out.

The Infamous Mobb Deep is available on iTunes now.

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