CD Reviews: Pusha T, Casey Veggies, Consequence

Street Rap

Pusha T, Wrath Of Caine (G.O.O.D. Music) 

Ever since he started with the Clipse, Pusha T has been recognized as one of hip-hop’s most talented wordsmiths. He has yet to get his proper due in the mainstream, but that may change. Now a part of Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. Music, Pusha drops Wrath Of Caine as a precursor to his full-length debut My Name Is My Name. If this mixtape is any indication, 2013 will be Pusha’s year. “This shit sound like God, don’t it?” Pusha repeats at the end of the Rick Ross-assisted “Millions.” That brazenness permeates every rhyme, pushing this project ahead of the competition. Whether he’s turning haters away on “Don’t Matter” or reflecting on his hustling days on “I Am Forgiven,” Pusha sets the table for what will likely be a rough year for his competition. ★★★★☆


Free-Spirited Hip-Hop

Casey Veggies Life Changes
(Roc Nation) 

When you hear 19-year-old Casey Veggies rhyme, you will likely figure him to be in his mid-twenties thanks to his tight rhymes and mature perspective. With this being his sixth project since 2007, Veggies has allowed fans to hear his growth. Life Changes captures his adjustment to stardom and adulthood perfectly. The brilliantly smooth title track and “Life” are examples of Veggies’ understanding of what comes with this new life he’s living. If introspection isn’t your thing, “She In My Car” might capture your attention with its bouncy production surrounding rhymes about women. The only true misstep is “I Love Me Some You” with Veggies failing miserably at what is supposed to be singing. Aside from that, Life Changes showcases a young rapper with a bright future. ★★★☆☆


Radio-Friendly Rap

Consequence Movies On Demand 4

Consequence has been in this game for years with ties to everyone from A Tribe Called Quest to Kanye West. But he has only recently become known in the mainstream thanks to his role in VH1’s reality show Love & Hip Hop. So it is in his best interest to deliver remarkable work with his 4th edition of the Movies On Demand series. Unfortunately, it’s a sketchy experience. Consequence’s work with the pen has never been in question, it’s his ear for production and ability to make a catchy hook that falters. He pulls up lame when cheesy hooks plague “Slipped Me Ecstasy.” The Busta Rhymes-featured “They My Juniors” underwhelms. Consequence redeems himself on the precautionary tale “Be Careful Who You Make Your Heroes” and the soul-sampled production of “Black Actors.” Movies On Demand 4 ends up being much like his career: solid but lacking enough noteworthy moments to catapult him to the upper echelon of hip-hop’s totem pole. ★★☆☆☆

Disc Scan

 Upcoming albums on Andreas’ radar …

MARCH 12: Mobb Deep’s Prodigy and producer Alchemist connect for the ambitiously titled Albert Einstein. MARCH 19: You can act like you don’t care, but the return of Justin Timberlake with The 20/20 Experience has a whole lot of people (this writer included) wanting to see what JT has been concocting since we last time saw him in 2006.

Suggested Next Read

Roseanne Barr’s Stand-up Persona Mellows with Time


Roseanne Barr’s Stand-up Persona Mellows with Time

By Steve Bornfeld

Warmer, sweeter, in need of a hug. Whoa … Either my adjective-dispenser is on the fritz or this publication is disguised as the Onion or it’s true: Roseanne has mellowed. Like all of us as we advance into late-middle age—it’s the baby boomers’ turn—some youthful promises of happiness and success have been kept (for Roseanne, spectacularly so). Others haven’t. Life has slapped you around. Regrets, disappointments and hard lessons have piled up to deepen and change you. … Which doesn’t mean it can’t be funny.