Jim Jones and Maino squash any kinds of previous beef and join forces to give us the Lobby Boyz album. This was an interesting album to say the least. As far as the bars go, you pretty much get what you expect from both MCs. You will get street raps as opposed to mind-bending punchlines. Now with the production on here, you definitely get an interesting mix. If you take every popular East Coast sample from the past 20-25 years or so and put them together, you get all the beats for this album. I don’t think that they had very many, if any, original beats on here. Now, one might say that that is a lazy approach musically, while others may praise the way they sound over those classic tracks. I find myself on the fence about it. If nothing else, it does sound great hearing two veteran MCs go back and forth over classic tracks. Jim definitely takes the crown with the lyrical side. All in all, not a bad effort from them Lobby Boyz.
Jim Jones and DJ Drama join forces to drop a pretty crappy mixtape. This is littered with below average artists and a ton of beats that sound the same. There is a good stretch in the middle of the project that just sounds like the same song over and over again. I got tons of respect for Jim Jones. He is usually pretty dope with the rhymes and he is on this one. It’s just that all of these other artists and terrible beats is just way too much. With this album being 25 tracks long, it goes way over what it should have been. A lot of these so-called rappers on here sound like everyone else out there. The only songs that are salvageable are the ones like “Fit Lit (Betty White)” featuring Dave East, Maino, and Fabolous and “Barz” featuring Dave East. When you get veteran East Coast rappers that know what they are doing on the mic, it produces better results. These are the kinds of projects that drag down the excellence of hip-hop music. It’s a quick money grab with no regard for the art. I’m hoping for a better project next time Jim.
Jim Jones teams up with producer Harry Fraud to give us a powerful and strong new record called The Fraud Department. The first and biggest observation is how hard Jim Jones is spitting on this one. The level of focus and effort in his rhymes on this go round is very noticeable. These aren’t just any old rhymes. He put love and care into penning these bars. Harry Fraud does a great job on the production side of things as well. He really provides an appropriate backdrop for Jim to paint his picture. While this one definitely has its social justice influences sprinkled throughout, it doesn’t become saturated by that message. It is just enough to make the listener aware but not innundate the eardrums. This was a fantastic job by both artists. We definitely hope that Jim can keep up the great work like this.
The Capo Jim Jones gives us the deluxe version of his El Capo album. This one boasts 15 new tracks added on which is basically a whole brand new album added onto the previous one. Jim does a great job at piecing together some new music with a theme to it. He enlists the help of singer Marc Scibilia for a lot of the tracks and honestly, the two of them have a knack for putting together some great and innovative new songs. I’m wondering if we will get a joint album out of them one day. There are some other notable features from Juelz Santana, Vado, Dave East, Maino, Nino Man, and the late Fred The Godson. The production on here is pretty decent. We even get an old school sounding Jim over a Heatmakerz track with “Gospel.” That is definitely one of the best highlights of this album. Overall, Jim Jones did a great job with this project and we definitely always look forward to new music from the Diplomat veteran.
The Dipset Capo comes back at us in grand fashion with this latest project. This new album was so much better than his recent projects in the past 5 years or so. It’s great that he went back to his roots and got the Heatmakerz to take care of a lot of the production side of things. You almost get that old, classic Diplomat sound. Jim does a great job on the mic. It was evidenced on the Diplomat album that came out last year and he keeps the train rolling on this one. He definitely sounds like classic Jim like he did on his first album On My Way To Church. The production on this album is fantastic for the most part as well. There are a few tracks that I didn’t get into as much as others. They tend to be more towards the front of the album. The end of the album is phenomenal though. There are a lot of fire tracks to finish it out. Great tracks include “NYC” which features Fat Joe, “Cocaine Dreamin” which features Ball Greazy and Dave East which has such a banging beat to it, “Cristal Occasions,” and “Mama I Made It.” Other great songs include “Sports Car” featuring Currensy and “Bread Right” featuring Trav. The far and away best track on this album has to be “To Whom It May Concern” which features Cam’ron, Benny, Conway, and Guordon Banks. The beat is classic Dipset sound and the Griselda camp helps out to absolutely murder the microphone. You can’t go wrong with that track at all. It is such a classic song. Jim definitely comes back strong with this one. I highly advise you to pick this one up.
The Dipset is finally back and they came back in a big way! This album only features the core members Cam’ron, Jim Jones, and Juelz Santana, but they did a pretty decent job overall on it. As far as bars, Jim Jones is noticeably fierce on here throughout. You can hear the ferocity and energy as he is spitting. He definitely stepped his game up for this one. Cam’ron has bars and sounds good, but sounds a little bit older on it. A little less energy is present when he is spitting. Juelz seems to have lost a step or two but overall, doesn’t do too bad on here. The beats was something I was was really concerned with. I was hoping to hear a complete revival of Heatmakerz beats and usher in a new renaissance in rap music, but I didn’t get that. That part of it was certainly a let down, but I think they managed to put together a newer, more updated sound though. You can definitely hear that they tried to dip their toe into the pool of the new sounding beats and flows. While it can be smart to do that sometimes and keep up with trends, I think it would have been better to sound more like the classics on this one. The best track on here is hands down “Dipset/LOX” which obviously features the LOX. The beat is absolutely slamming and all rappers do their thing on this one. This is definitely the crown jewel on the project. It was also good to hear them end the project with a freestyle from Un Kasa. Although he sound a little dated in his voice, his energy is still there. All in all, this was a dope project and we are glad to have the set back in full force.
This was a bit of a different release out of the norm from what we normally do here, but a dope listen all around. This producer WalyO did a great thing and took some verses from the Diplomat camp and made some dope tracks for them to be laid over top of. It pretty much goes without saying that the Diplomat members can all spit. So lyrically, you pretty much have to give them all the credit they deserve for dope verses since we have already heard them before on previous releases. The beats on here were pretty dope overall. I think WalyO is definitely working with something here. I’d definitely like to hear more from him. It’s not quite what the Heatmakerz had done for the Diplomats, but it is a fresh and dope sound that serves this creation well.
Jim Jones comes back a lot stronger with this latest project called Wasted Talent. First off, it was definitely a good move having the Robert DeNiro directed “A Bronx Tale” movie as the backdrop for this project. I think Jim delivers some solid rhymes on this one. He ditched some of the vamp life type rhymes and went back to the essence of Harlem which has made him great. The beats on this project are definitely a lot better as well. There are definitely some classic sounding Diplomats/Heatmakerz type records on here. At the same time, there are a few tracks I could have done without as well. Jim tries to sound like every other mumble rapper out there on some of these trap beats. The absolute highlight of this project has to be “Once Upon A Time” featuring Cam’ron. The rhymes that both MCs trade are FLAWLESS. The beat is FLAWLESS. This is pure Diplomats sound on this one. Honorable mentions go to “Never Did 3 Quarters” and “Dust & Powder” featuring Jadakiss. More Harlem heat for your eardrums. While not a perfect album, Jim definitely got most of the way back to greatness with this album.
Jim Jones has been putting out some crap for the last few years. I’m talking some real piles of feces. So when I saw that this project was coming out, I fully expected more of the same. He sort of fell apart ever since the Diplomats disbanded. Upon listening to this album, it actually wasn’t as bad as I thought it would have been. It’s not a great album but I feel like he may have done an about face and started coming back to some better work. It does seem like he stepped up his lyrical ability on this one. Instead of boring us to death with stupid adlibs about Vamp Life and how his cars sound, he seems to make a good attempt at describing the Harlem drug-trading life a little bit better. While the rhymes seem to have a little bit of life breathed into them, the beats fall flat. There is nothing on here that really sticks with me after I listen to it. Nothing “rewind-worthy.” I wouldn’t call this project a failure but it is definitely not a win either. I still await the Jim Jones of days past when Diplomats were on the rise. I know he’s got it in him.