Best songs: “Tupac Back”, “I’m a Boss”, “Play Your Part”
You know exactly what your getting into when you listen a group project from a group with “Maybach” in their name headed up by Rick Ross. Surprising aside from some lackluster raps from Ross’ weed holders, the production is pretty solid as far as Lex Luger rip off beats go.
1. “Self Made” (performed by Wale, Meek Mill, Pill, Rick Ross and Teedra Moses) (featuring Just Blaze)
Just Blaze starts the project off right with a very Roc-a-fella sounding beat. Wale even sounds like Memphis Bleek while Meek Mill sounds like Freeway for good measure. Btw, I’m feeling Mills on this, so ignorant.
2. “Tupac Back” (performed by Meek Mill and Rick Ross)
The ignorance continues with the hood favorite “Tupac Back”. I know for me this is the “driving around looking for trouble anthem” among me and my niggas. Mills sounds so hungry on this, even though he doesn’t really say anything jaw dropping (pause).
3. “600 Benz” (performed by Wale and Rick Ross, featuring Jadakiss)
I know this was supposed to be the song that made Wale cool, but unfortunately Wale was allowed to rap on it. Is it still cool to be rapping about kicks from Japan and pronouncing everything as errything? Nontheless, Ross’ hook is classic BMF brilliant ignorance while Jada adds absolutely nothing here except trite “life’s a bitch” metaphors.
4. “Pacman” (performed by Rick Ross and Pill) (Produced by Young Shun, DJ Spinz)
For some odd reason Ross interpolates the “John Doe” hook from his Ashes to Ashes mixtape for Pill’s solo track. While I do feel Pill’s hunger, he’s swag and lyrics are so garbage it’s unbearable.
5.”By Any Means” (performed by Rick Ross, Meek Mill, Wale and Pill) (Produced by Lil’ Lody)
BMF reinterpreted through a %5 lens. You may want to fastward after Mill’s verse.
6. “Fitted Cap” (performed by Wale, Meek Mill and Rick Ross, featuring J. Cole) (Produced by Beat Billionaire)
Not sure how Ross is wearing a snap back and a fitted at the same time, but the key to listening to Ross is not to analyze too much. Again Wale has no swag, Meek Mills is hungry and J Cole sounds scared and out of place here. He’s like Carlton in that episode of Fresh Prince when he becomes all hood and shit rocking a do-rag living in Compton.
7. “Rise” (performed by Pill, Wale & Teedra Moses, featuring Cyhi Da Prynce & Curren$y) (Produced by Cardiak)
Things finally slow down on the Teedra Moses assisted “Rise”. Unfortunately there is no concept or chemistry to hold this song together. It sounds like one of those throwaway songs you make when you happen to meet up with a bunch of rappers and weed holders at 4 am in studio b (which it probably is).
8. “That Way” (performed by Wale and Rick Ross, featuring Jeremih) (Produced by Lex Luger)
What’s funny is the beat that doesn’t sound like Lex did it, is actually done by Lex. There’s really nothing more interesting about this song.
9. “I’m a Boss” (performed by Meek Mill and Rick Ross) (Produced by Jahlil Beats)
This is probably the best song on the album, Meek Mill channels Freeway, Memphis Bleek and Drake all in one verse. However after the second hook things nose dive. Ross also delivers the verse of the album, even though he doesn’t rhyme a few lines.
10. “Don’t Let Me Go” (performed by Pill and Gunplay) (Produced by Lee Major of The Inkredibles)
Do I really have to listen to a song by Pill and Gunplay? No. And neither do you.
11. “Pandemonium” (performed by Wale, Meek Mill and Rick Ross) (Produced by Lee Major of The Inkredibles)
Another Roc-a-fella esque group record. Even though Ross sounds like he’s got a cold, he actually has a great flow and some lines here. Fastforward as soon as Mill says “jumping out the phantom like a muthafucking midget”.
12. “Play Your Part” (performed by Rick Ross, Meek Mill and Wale, featuring D.A. from Chester French) (Produced by Lee Major of The Inkredibles)
Glad to see this mixtape track from Ashes to Ashes on here. I really love the smoked out lounge feel this song has with Ross coming though like a seasoned Vegas performer and dude from Chester French channeling a detuned 80’s wedding singer. Wale isn’t too shabby here, though I do wish his verse was cut out, he totally kills the vibe.
13. “Ridin’ on Dat Pole” (performed by Pill) (Produced by Beat Billionaire)
The title pretty much says it. Unfortunately no skrippers are paying their rent to this record.
14. “Big Bank” (performed by Pill, Meek Mill, Torch, Rick Ross, featuring French Montana) (Produced by Young Shun, Lex Luger)
Okay dropping an x pill in the fish tank is awesome and again reinforces Ross’ imagery as this Bond style bad guy (which we all know isn’t true). Frenchie even shows up to show these young boys how ignorant thug rap is done.
15. “Running Rebels” (performed by Wale, Meek Mill, Stalley & Teedra Moses) (Produced by Tone P)
The album’s closer, Wale finally sounds like he’s in his element while new MMG member Stalley shows hella promise. It’ll be interesting to see what route he goes.
While I do enjoy the brilliant ignorance of Rick Ross, his cohorts need a few more seasons at summer camp to really refine their swag.