This is pretty bland, by-the-numbers stuff. Apparently Mancini is a rising emcee on the East Coast (what aspiring two-bit “mixtape” emcee isn’t, really?), though if this demo is anything to go by, one shouldn’t expect a whole lot from this Sicilian in the future. What we have here is mortifyingly stale street rap, complete with a boring love joint, Elephant Man-assisted club track, Terror Squad-flavored truck bouncer, swaggering, artillery-referencing hardcore number and the requisite “gots ta hustle” biographical offering.

Just why do we have to suffer through material as haphazardly derivative and redundant as this? Mancini is assertive enough as an emcee, flaunting a metrically competent and well-structured flow that is hindered entirely by completely pointless content. Horrible hooks adorn the untitled Elephant “when are my 15 minutes going to be up” Man featured track, the Fat Joe-aspiring Track 3 (what on EARTH is up with the quasi-Kokane high-pitched sniveling?), the gangsta posturing of Track 4. Lines like “These guns have long range, you don’t want me to aim there/ Bang there, yeah bullets will rain there/ I’ll put red dots on your nose like you’re a reindeer/” are more tragic and farcical than menacing and sinister, while others like “I’m a hustler, I’ll sell fire to the devil” is so cringe-worthy it’s almost nauseating.

Perhaps I’m the wrong person to approach with this record, for I expect creativity, soul and conviction in my rap. This is so formulaic, so devoid of identity and character that I am frankly quite offended. Avoid.

Mancini :: Mancini