Some are bound to question this release, and that's certainly justifiable. Of the 23 tracks (damn), fans have more than likely heard all but six. It's called "The Tru Story," but C-Murder's latest incarcerated endeavor is essentially a re-release of '03's "The Truest Shit I Ever Said," unspecifically cited here as the "original album." Mad props to C-Murder's marketing team for that. For real, though - this is a pretty sweet deal for anyone not banking on another full-length. Remember - the man is locked down, and he's already fucked himself out of parole hearings for no one else but y'all.
For C-Murder to accumulate any new material at all is pretty remarkable, thus, the meagerly output is still appreciable. The bad news? Quite frankly, his time in the pen has not made him any better at rapping. He's still an even-worse version of brother Master P, who nowadays gets circles rapped around him by his barely pubescent son. Murder's lax, almost unconcerned flow is far too laid back to accentuate the violent ghetto scenarios so often intended. "You don't wanna mess with that glock, boy," a lyric most gangsta rappers would easily pull off, might as well have been rapped by a Care Bear than Corey Miller. It's hard to take his persona seriously, which is ironic considering his obviously belligerent past. Nevertheless, B.G., who sounds like a scrawny, old, dying lady, is infinitely more threatening.
The new tracks are a lock to please fans, each of them showcasing all of that which made C-Murder a platinum recording artist in the late nineties. Ill Will Fulton arranges five of the beats, all reveling in the glory of No Limit's trademark synth-infected, pre-crunk bounce. M.O.P. roughneck Lil' Fame has no problem rocking Fulton's fake horns on "I Want It," sounding like something not far from a starving tyrannosaurus on steroids. There isn't much tweaking from the electro twanging of "Calliope" to that of "On My Block," in fact, the first 18 minutes of the album never changes pace. A high point is reached with "Die For Mine," Bass Heavy remixing "Y'all Heard Of Me" into a hyperactive terpsichore of frantically waning whistles.
The real selling point of this release might just be the DVD, which houses an hour-long documentary featuring exclusive behind-bars footage. I'm not gon' sugarcoat just 'cause homeboy's in jail: it'll put anyone outside of the Official C-Murder Fan Club to sleep. The whole thing is one long, sloppy dick ride, giving exaggerated props to an ostensibly good man who just happens to be serving a life sentence for dropping a 16-year-old. Any footage of C is fudged and of poor quality, and it's a chore to decipher anything through the handheld audio. Even so, watching a former No Limit soldier light a dude's ass on fire is unquestionably good television.
Six years ago, "Tru Story" would have been but a flake in a snowstorm, but with the No Limit sound now in Lil' Jon's backseat, it's actually a rather invigorating return to form. Something about C-Murder's uninspiring rap is strangely appealing, but he continues to fail where his brother always excelled, in making exciting music. But don't get mad at the lack of growls or new material. Call it an EP with a bonus DVD and a free copy of "Truest Shit" on the side. You can't hate that if you try.
Music Vibes: 7 of 10 Lyric Vibes: 6 of 10 TOTAL Vibes: 6.5 of 10
Originally posted: October 17, 2006