Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Slaughterhouse


Royce da 5'9, Crooked I (my favorite member of the group), Joell Ortiz, and Joe Budden make up the four man team of Slaughterhouse. When it comes to lyrical muscle on the mic, you're not going to find a more skilled team of MCs. On their 2009 debut (the photo listed above), they displayed great chemistry over very good production, and as a result, we got one of 2009's best albums (4.5 star rating from me), especially on an independent level. They were hungry, focused, and energetic, and most important of all, there were clearly NO commercial attempts on this album in any form. My how things changed within a few years.


A lot of us had high hopes for this group when it was announced they were signing with Eminem's Shady Records. The potential was there and just by being associated with Eminem, it seemed like this group would finally get the recognition they deserved, without changing anything that made them stand out a few years back. And that's where the hope ends.

SMH. I listened to this album this morning, and needless to say, I'm NOT impressed at all. I'm not going to say it's wack, it's just VERY disappointing. The production simply doesn't fit them at all, as most of it sounds experimental. Lyrically, well, they drop a few good lines here and there, and maybe it's just me, but overall they sound uninspired, almost as if their sole motivations for this album is the check, mainstream acceptance and a platinum plaque. Don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with wanting to aspire to have these things, but when you change your style completely just to get it, that's never a good thing, and you run the risk of alienating your (loyal) supporters in the process. I'm so glad I didn't dish out $13.99 for this. We all know how different hip hop is (and how it's been for the last several years), but it's so frustrating when high caliber artists feel as though they need to change their sound, especially for sales and mainstream recognition. Whatever happened to the days of being yourself and staying in your lane?


Overall, regarding this latest Slaughterhouse release, again, I'm VERY disappointed, and what I thought was going to be an automatic candidate for one of the best albums of the year has turned into one of the year's most disappointing releases. I don't want to go so far as to say signing with Eminem (who I'm also a fan of) put the nail in the coffin of their careers. I guess we still have to wait and see, but right now it's NOT looking good. I have NO desire to listen to this album again.

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