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The (W)rap Up - Week of July 6, 2010
Posted by Emanuel Wallace at Tuesday, July 13th, 2010 at 12:00AM :: Email this article :: Print this article

Sir Lucious Left Foot

Big Boi ::
Sir Lucious Left Foot... The Son of Chico Dusty
Def Jam Recordings
Author: Jesal 'Jay Soul' Padania
Click here to find   out more!
"So, how many of you Google yourselves regularly? Losers… Yeah, me too. Not a lot, but occasionally (and, you know, only for the articles). It takes me interesting places too, since a lot of the reviews get copied and pasted verbatim into various forums. Then people agree, disagree or ignore. The first time I came across one of my reviews in this manner, being hung, drawn and quartered by some Four Avatars of the Apocalypse, the criticism was stinging, and my ego was bruised. But after a short amount of time, I learned to take both praise and criticism with a pinch of salt. If someone took time out of their day to write me an email saying they loved the review, were they really praising me, or did they simply like the way my review made them feel about the album? Similarly, when a diehard fan has been looking forward to an album from their favourite artist for years, and some dickhead reviewer comes along and nitpicks the hell out of it, was it the specific critique they loathed or the feeling that I'd deflated their sense of expectation? That I took something away from them?"

Capone-N-Noreaga :: Camouflage Summer Mixtape :: XXL/57th Ave.
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon

"Much like the group themselves, this download is pretty hood. Song titles are in ALL CAPS like Daniel Dumile. If you put this one on your iPod you're going to have to fill in the artist name and album title yourself or you'll only find it on the "recently added" playlist. The artwork? Well obviously when you call your shit "Camouflage Summer" you've got to be dipped head to toe in military wears, and yet it still looks like someone did a poor Photoshop trace before cut and pasting their pics over a wall full of non-descript spraypaint tags. Okay so it's a free mixtape, CNN gets to skate on it, but if they do something this awful on "The War Report 2" they need to fire their graphic designer and whoever at IceH20 (their new label, run by Raekwon) approved the artwork. "

Carnage45 :: Test of Time :: Carnage Muzik
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon

"Now Carnage real name Shawn Dix makes it perfectly clear in his bio that he hails from the Eastern shore of Virginia, nowhere near "The Realness" of Queensbridge in NYC, but put a blindfold on a friend and play them "Test of Time" and see if they can tell the difference. Instead of denying the similarity and asking people to stop comparing him to 'Mega he should embrace the love - after all his other brother has been a cult favorite in hip-hop for the last two decades. There's plenty to like on "Test of Time" regardless of who he sounds like or where he hails from. The slow and heavy Chemist backdrop of "Smoke & Drive" puts you perfectly in the zone as Carnage fights negativity around him with a little cannabis. "

Dillz & Diwon :: Bonna Rhymes :: Shemspeed Records
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon

"Kosha Dillz kicks a stream-of-consciousness rap until the stream runs out of water, then he lets Cage the Elephant sing the hook, and he comes back for another non-stop rambling verse. It's true that Diwon and Dillz managed to fatten this one into a more electronic hip-hop funk style jam, but I still prefer Cage's original over their tribute to it. I suspect fans of Fanfarlo's "Luna" may feel the same way, as the English pop band founded by a Swedish musician suddenly sounds like no parts of either - and Dillz is trying to do an accent that's either Jamaican or Brixton that's ALSO no parts of either. If you were to ask GWAR they would probably declare that "this is no life for a GOD" after hearing Diwon and Dillz take on "Lust in Space." It's not heavy, it's not metal, and it's other than a couple of lines like "blood everywhere, no one even really cares" it's not even brutal."

DoItAll :: American Du :: Poppyseed Records
as reviewed by Pete T.

"While the bright, horn-heavy production was certainly the main attraction of the early LOTUG records, DoItAll and Mr. Funke were no slouches on the mic, sporting upbeat flows and tireless energy that served a perfect match for the rich and funky music. Seventeen years after his group's debut, Dupre "DoItAll" Kelly struck out on his own with his first solo album on Poppyseed Records. A glance at "American Du"'s tracklist should be enough to entice any '90s East Coast fan, with a dream guest list including spots from Masta Ace, Grand Daddy IU, Mr. Cheeks, Treach, Shyheim, Craig G, Ed O.G., DJ Kool, and Michael Bivins with production by Pete Rock, Scott Storch, and Fokus. For such a low-profile release, these big names are all the more impressive, and they do their part to ensure that "American Du" is laced with strong posse cuts."

various artists :: Greensleeves Rhythm Album #27 - Diwali Gold Edition :: VP Records
as reviewed by Emanuel Wallace

"Generally speaking, I'm more of wallflower at the party, not really much of a dancer and I'm pretty sure that Goodie Mob was throwing jabs at me when they dropped "They Don't Dance No Mo", but I digress. I do make a handful of exceptions however, depending on how many Long Islands I consume and how dark the place is. I would be minding my own business and then the DJ's reggae set starts. I hear the words "Shake..that...thing", the beginning of Sean Paul's "Get Busy" and I'd be driven to the dance floor to try my best to violate someone's daughter as much as possible without being arrested. I didn't know it at the time, but what had magnetically pulled me to the floor (besides the sights) was a riddim called Diwali which has been credited to a producer named Steven "Lenky" Marsden."

Guilty Simpson :: O.J. Simpson :: Stones Throw Records
as reviewed by Patrick Taylor

"Guilty was a Dilla protege, and  Dilla was supposed to be handling production on Guilty's debut. Then Dilla died,  and by the time "Ode to the Ghetto" appeared in March of 2008, there were hardly any Dilla joints on it. Having Madlib, Black Milk, and Oh No pick up the slack was a nice consolation prize. While I enjoyed "Ode to the Ghetto", I respectfully disagree with this website's perfect rating of that album. It's a good album, but Guilty's rhyming sometimes resorted to gangster rap cliches, and I had trouble understanding what songs like "Getting Riches/Getting Bitches" were supposed to be the antidote for. Did we really need more thuggish gangsta rap? Aren't there about 100 street rap albums released each month that fill that niche? Rather than feeling like the Next Big Thing, "Ode to the Ghetto" was just more of the same. "

Killah Priest :: The 3 Day Theory :: Man Bites Dog Records
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon

"In the beginning, there was the Wu. The Wu-Tang Clan separated the light from the darkness, and hip-hop proclaimed it good. Looking upon their creation, Wu-Tang created rap heaven on earth, and at this point Killah Priest fell from the skies to land in Brooklyn. Living under the alias Walter Reed, Priest first found his way to RZA, and made his introduction to their hip-hop world on "Diary of a Madman" by the Gravediggaz - and it was good. Soon the fallen angel was a full-fledged disciple of the Wu appearing on albums by GZA, Ol' Dirty Bastard and Sunz of Man, and soon enough he was releasing a solo CD called "Heavy Mental." Wu-Tang Clan members returned the favor by producing and appearing on his official debut, and it was good... only it wasn't ALL good. "

Too Poetic :: Droppin' Signal :: Tommy Boy Records {*unreleased*}
** RapReviews "Back to the Lab" series **
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon

"If you're reading this review right now, check out The Too Poetic Story by Jesse Serwer when you're done with my dissection. Actually check it out at any time - go there first and come back if you want. It's a fantastic piece that goes in depth on the history of hip-hop in Wyandanch, New York. You probably know Wyandanch because of Rakim, but there was no shortage of hip-hop talent bubbling up to the surface during the 1980's in this unincorporated hamlet of Babylon. Poetic was in and out of a variety of groups and crews, rapping under a half-dozen or more monikers, before he finally landed his big break and was signed to Tommy Boy Records. Soon enough a twelve inch single hit radio and retail in '89: "Poetical Terror" b/w "God Made Me Funky." "

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