This project is a great representation of how Joell Ortiz feels about the state of New York hip hop as well as hip hop overall. The way he rhymes combined with the backing from Domingo shows he is still hungry and wants to push New York back towards the top.
The production is good as there is plenty of variation so that Joell can explore more subject matter. Domingo may not have a true signature sound but he does have a flavour that is present on each song. Once he develops a bit more, his beats will stand out more but this project shows he is no slouch.
The lyricism is incredible with Joell mixing a lot of different elements into very clever lines. He flexes his lyrical muscles and paints vivid pictures as well as using very witty lines to get his point across. There is little room for improvement on this side with his passion really driving the project forward.
The features add a lot to this project as they make up a large portion of the verses. Each brings a lot of effort but some sound more on point than others. None do a bad job but some review of who to use on each track for maximum effectiveness.
Overall, this project shows that Joell Ortiz is a force in hip hop and that he believes New York hip hop can be revived back to the glory days. he just needs more assistance from the rest of New York.
This album is a great testament to how much Joell Ortiz has grown musically. This is all crafted to work out brilliantly as a personnal story and as a musical project.
The production works well with the messages of each track and !llmind masterfully puts it together to work almost like a play, in different acts. Each beat does not take over the track and works well through the album to allow the emotions to feel natural. More of a balance of energy to emotional could make this even more cohesive, however it is very cohesive already and does not need it.
The lyricism is great and shows why Joell Ortiz is considered an elite lyricist. He weaves through great imagery and description to make rhymes that really speak to the listener. Maybe some more songs just to energise would be good to break up the emotions, however the tracks are still enjoyable and make great listening.
The features do a great job complimenting Joell Ortiz’s style. Each put in a great effort and make fantastic verses that blend well to make great songs. Some more singing may show that Ortiz can work with all kinds or artists, however he works well with who is on here to make songs that poeple enjoy hearing.
Overall, this is a very personal and intimate album that shows how Joell should not be considered an underdog in any sense. With !llmind handling the production, this project is a highlight of the year.
This is not a Joell Ortiz project as much as a simple showcase of how he can add a strong verse to a range of song types and how he can be appealing to a wider audience. Joell brings his strong verbal abilities to a host of popular tracks and this has the affect of showing that he can be great on almost any beat.
The production is good and has been proved to be popular with audiences already. It is energetic and full of life which makes it more enjoyable to listen to as it gets the listener pumped up and ready to get out and do things. This doesn’t get dull on the full listen through as it is only six tracks. It is great from a production point of view.
The lyricism is strong as it is with every Joell Ortiz verse and as he is putting himself, pretty much, as a featured artist on these tracks, it makes him stand out against others on the tracks. Any other srtist on the tracks doesn’t sound as good as Joell in any aspect and he really improves each track overall with his wordplay.
As Joell is acting as the feature on these tracks, he does great. The other people on the songs are good and help make it an entertaining and enjoyable listen. However they do not compare to Joell on any track and he is behind the driving force behind making these songs great rather than good.
Overall, this is a great project to listen to and for Joell Ortiz to show how great of an emcee he is on yet another set of songs. It is cohesive and fun to listen to and Joell proves he can improve almost any track by being on it.
The title of this album is a perfect reflection of how it sounds. Joell sounds comfortable on every track, even on tracks where the content is dark, and it is clear that he has come into his own as an individual rapper and not just as one quarter of Slaughterhouse.
Joell Ortiz is clearly a fantastic lyricist as shown in his work with Slaughterhouse but with these solo tracks he really showcases why he is one of the greatest lyricists in the game today. His tone, style and flow also have unique properties and help him stand out amoung the features.
The features themselves are good, and add a lot to the dimensions of the tracks. they are mostly singing on choruses, but the verses on there are also very focused and concise. “Brothers Keeper” is the obvious stand out track for features with the rest of Slaughterhouse on it but Joell actually stands out on the track, even with such talent.
The production on the album is excellent. The beats are very diverse and help to give Joell a varied palette to work with. They help to create a great atmosphere on each track that helps lend itself to the message on each song.
Overall, this is a fantastic album that helps to give Joell a solo platform to show himself as a great rapper and not that Slaughterhouse is a great music group.