50 Cent & Trey Songz Miss The Mark on Single “Smoke”


50 Cent ft. Trey Songz • “Smoke” • G-Unit • US Release Date: April 1, 2014 50 Cent’s best days as a relevant MC seem far behind him, at least judging by his blasé, uninspired comeback single, “Smoke”.  Assisted by an equally lackadaisical Trey Songz,  “Smoke” manages to compare sex and smoking – preferably blunts…

Review: YG, ‘My Krazy Life’


Overall, YG delivers a compelling debut with My Krazy Life YG • My Krazy Life • Def Jam • US Release Date: March 18, 2014 YG is the latest rapper on a long list of hopefuls to release his major label debut, searching for his ‘come-up’. Judging by its title (My Krazy Life) as well…

Chief Keef Offers Little Substance on “Rehab”


Chief Keef • “F*ck Rehab” • Glory Gang / Interscope • Single Release Date: March 13, 2014 Chief Keef – that’s that MC that I don’t like… just keeping it one hunna… Maybe that’s too harsh or an unfair statement to make, but Chief Keef failed to impress on his 2012 debut LP Finally Rich….

Review: Young Money, ‘Rise Of An Empire’


Young Money’s Rise Of An Empire is a fail… an ‘epic’ one if you will  Young Money • Rise of An Empire • Cash Money / Motown • US Release Date: March 11, 2014 It is incredibly difficult to be unbiased towards compilation efforts prior to listening.  Honestly though, the compilation often incurs issues that…

Review: Kid Cudi, ‘Satellite Flight: Journey to Mother Moon’


Kid Cudi’s surprise fourth LP is both ‘creative’ and ‘off-putting’ Kid Cudi • Satellite Flight: Journey to Mother Moon • Republic • US Release Date: February 25, 2014 Describing Kid Cudi as merely “one of a kind” might be the biggest understatement ever…change that – it is the biggest understatement ever.  Album release by album…

Review: Rick Ross, ‘Mastermind’


Rick Ross keeps a good thing going strong on LP number six  Rick Ross • Mastermind • Def Jam • US Release Date: March 3, 2014 Six albums in, the best way to describe Rick Ross is that he ‘is what he is’.  Ross’ high watermark artistically was his fourth LP, 2010 masterpiece Teflon Don. …

Review: Schoolboy Q, ‘Oxymoron’


 Oxymoron proves to be a dark, captivating, yet sometimes difficult album to listen to  Schoolboy Q • Oxymoron • Top Dawg/Interscope • US Release Date: February 25, 2014 Schoolboy Q keeps things 100 on Oxymoron – he keeps it real “from the jump” (catch the Drake reference?).  In fact, the MC keeps things so ‘real’…

Retrospective Review: Kanye West, ‘The College Dropout’


The College Dropout sounds as fresh as ever, ten years later.  Kanye West • The College Dropout • Roc-A-Fella • US Release Date: February 10, 2004 “Sometimes I feel no one in this world understands us / but we don’t care what people say.”  True that, true that.  The aforementioned quote from “We Don’t Care”…

Review: DJ Khaled, ‘Suffering from Success’


Khaled’s Not ‘Suffering from Success’, perhaps suffers from a lack of innovation…  DJ Khaled⎪ Suffering From Success⎪ Cash Money ⎪⎪ US Release Date: October 22, 2013 If there is one reservation I (and likely others) have with DJ Khaled’s albums, it is that generally they all seem ‘one-dimensional’.  Maybe that is a harsh critique, or…

Review: Pusha T, ‘My Name Is My Name’


Pusha T captures a darker portrait of life exceptionally on his ‘official’ solo debut Pusha T⎪ My Name Is My Name ⎪Def Jam ⎪⎪ US Release Date: October 8, 2013 To call ‘street life’ captivating would probably be an incredibly irresponsible statement to make.  What isn’t an irresponsible description is that Pusha T delivers and…