YG – Blame it on the Streets Review

This is a nice short album to remind people that YG is one of the new generation of rappers who shows real promise to keep West Coast Hip Hop alive. This album has a fair amount of throwback value to YG’s debut album “My Krazy Life” which is a good as that was also a good album. However with some repeat songs it can become difficult to really enjoy if you have heard “My Krazy Life” enough times.

The production is good and enjoyable for most listeners as it is very much in the style of popular Hip Hop producer DJ Mustard who has been known to craft some of the biggest hits of 2014. The range is good with some more energetic tracks mixed with an acapella freestyle and an acoustic cover of one of his previous songs. It is a nice blend of styles and flows which create a very diverse album.

The lyricism is good as the freestyle especially shows that YG can rap without the song being held up with the beat. It is clever in most places and where it isn’t, it is kept simpler to help get the point across. This helps YG to create a lot of imagery and show how he has grown as an artist since his debut album dropped earlier in the year.

The features are good but may not always be discernable from one another as some have similar voices. This is not a big problem but with so many features on so few tracks, it can start to feel less like YG’s album and more like a free for all. This doesn’t mean the features aren’t enjoyable though and they definitely help shape the tracks on the album with different pitches and some singing used to add more depth.

The other big thing about this album is it comes with a half an hour short film written and starring YG with the music being used from the songs on the album as well as some from his debut. This increases the entertainment value of the album as a different form of media helps to stimulate the listener and helps to show life from YG’s point of view.

Overall, this is a good pit stop on the way to a more streamlined and cohesive album but is still very enjoyable. The songs mixed with the short film can show YG in many lights ad helps to get his messages across better.

The L.O.X – The Trinity 3rd Sermon Review

The L.O.X have cemented their status as a premium east coast group and this project shows it. This mixtape keeps it gritty while staying on the lyrical side of the fence. Jadakiss, Styles P and Sheek Louch all bring their signature styles to the tracks and helps to create a great group vibe and a cohesive project.

The production is dark on most of the tracks which helps lend itself to the content of drug selling and other street level activities. There are some cheerier tracks but more are kept dark and menacing to help with the aggression from the rappers.

The lyricism is prominent and great on every track. While having so many tracks with similar contents, it can be tricky to keep up the story telling and wordplay but this group has been consistently able to re-word or re-structure to turn a regular sentence into the lyrical genius they are capable of.

The features are few but add another level of depth to the project. The features are singing features used for choruses, but without them, the mixtape would be very one dimensional so it is a good choice to put them in.

Overall, this is a good album for every member of the L.O.X and they should build up from the recent success they are having with the Trinity series.

Ty Dolla $ign – Sign Language Review

While Ty$ is a talented singer, he may need to find some new things to sing about. The actual vocals and the ability on this project is fantastic, however the constant stream of songs about women and drugs can become stale. The only thing that keeps you listening ot it is the fresh approach to some old classics. Ty$ takes “Dead Presidents” and flips it to be about strippers which brings a fresh perspective to what you can do with a song.

The vocals, as said before, are fantastic. Ty$ shines with ability and is rising up to take the spot as Hip Hop’s go to singer. On songs with featured artists, Ty$ really stands out as his style of singing ties together what the featured artists put on the track and helps the project sound a little cohesive, despite the repetitiveness of the song matter.

The production is good, with beats that blend with in with the singers crooning and help to showcase how talented Ty$ is. The project as a whole, production wise, fits together very well and as projects go the production flows together and is a good palate for talent.

Overall, this is not a bad project, and not as good as his “Beach House” projects, but needs a bit more variation in the subject matter to make it a great project. However Ty$ is still a very talented singer and should continue to make great tracks.

DJ Mustard – 10 Summers Review

This project would feel like a collection of uncohesive DJ Mustard songs if the skits weren’t in there. That is the danger with making an album from a producers side of things. However DJ Mustard has done a better job than most by actually keeping a lot of the same features on different songs as this helps to keep a feeling of consistency. The skits add a nice touch of breaking up the songs with nice little pieces of insight into what DJ Mustard is aiming for, namely total radio and musical takeover.

The vocals on this album are good, with all the features putting in good efforts on their verses and hooks, and with some big names thrown in there. The only problem is, while it can make some of them catchy, the hooks on a lot of the songs are very repetitive and in some cases just one line repeated over and over, see “Ghetto Tales” and “Guiseppe”. This is the new emerging trend that can make some songs feel like they are slowing down and not keeping up with the style of beat DJ Mustard is trying to supply.

The production is of course fantastic with DJ Mustards signature style shining through on every track. With each track individually, his signature style is a bonus and keeps the track fresh. However, if you listen to the album all the way through the production can start to sound a bit monotonous and missing a bit more variation, although it does start to change very late on in the album.

Overall, this is a good album to nod your head to and pick out your favourites to listen to, but can become a little bit of a chore to listen to the whole thing when you start playing it. A touch more variation and maybe even another skit or two would take this album a long way, but DJ Mustard has put in a solid effort and should be commended for opening up new production paths for the people.