Sunday, December 14, 2008

Young Jeezy -- The Recession

Rating: 3/5 stars

Pros: Sounds exactly like his last two albums.

Cons: Sounds exactly like his last two albums.

Bottom Line: If Jeezy wants to become a great rapper, he'll eventually have to stop re-making Thug Motivation 101.

Recommended Tracks:

Put On

My President

The introduction of Young Jeezy’s new album “The Recession” features newscasters talking about gas prices and the economy. The album ends with a song about Barack Obama (“My President”) featuring Nas. Otherwise, it’s basically indistinguishable from his first two albums.

He still raps about crack dealing as self-actualization (“I can show you how to make a mil right now”). He sticks to the same dark, epic orchestrations of his previous hits (“Soul Survivor”). And he faithfully uses his trademark flow - raspy, slow and ad-lib heavy - throughout.

The rare track that varies at all from this formula, like the soul-sampling “Circulate,” stands out as a result. “The Recession” is an 18-track album that seems to contain less than half-a-dozen distinct songs.

But specialization has its benefits. He only makes one type of song, but he makes that song very well, and the customer can count on that same level of quality every time. So if you like the ubiquitous lead single “Put On” you’ll like “The Recession.”

The chorus to his Obama song sums up his philosophy pretty well: “My president is black, my Lambo is blue / And I’ll be (expletive) if my rims ain’t too / My money’s light green, and my Jordan’s light grey/ And they love to see white, now how much you trying to pay.”

He sees the prospect of a black president as inspirational, not to change society, but to make more money. It’s the album’s underlying theme: Times may be bad, but the bills still have to be paid. He may not know Obama’s message very well, but he sure knows America’s.

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