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ALBUM PREVIEW: Beanie Sigel

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Upon entering the spot (NYC’s Quad Studios), one can’t avoid hearing Beanie Sigel in his prime.  The engineer blasts classic verses from the Broad Street bully to set the mood.  Joints like “Change The Game,” “Guess Who’s Back” and “This Can’t Be Life” bang while a powerful scent of hot wings fills the air. The lights are low and it’s packed.  You got your usual blend of fugazi industry types fronting.  One or two dudes spit their raps extra loud along with the music hoping to get noticed while the groupies further assess who’s in the room.  The star of the night seems to be in a great mood.  Surrounded by his crew, Beans is secluded in the studio with a clear view of the crowd.  While he has proven to be a sick MC on his previous efforts, this new work is meant to officially certify himself as one of the greats.  After an hour of everyone parlaying, B. Sig gets on the mic and announces that he is ready to debut The Solution (Roc-A-Fella / Def Jam), dropping December 11.“All Of The Above” featuring R. KellyProduced By The RunnersThe first single off the project, Kells is on the hook and Mack goes in on the fast paced track.  It’s clearly a joint for the clubs but not the best way to open up a Beanie Sigel album.“Bout That (Let Me Know)”Produced By Cool & DreBeans talks big money and does it effectively over a well produced track featuring blaring drums and a sped up soul sample. One of the guys from Cool & Dre hits us with the hook “Money, cars, cash, clothes!  Are you bout that sh*t; baby let me know!”  It sounds like something Kanye might have come up for him, but it still works.“U Ain’t Ready 4 Me” featuring Styles P.Produced by Dame GreaseA prime example of audio cocaine as Styles P. and Beans go back and forth on some thugged out RUN-DMC ish.  Grease blends some dark sounding synth notes and light keys backed by loud drums for extra emphasis.  A soon to be classic street track as both MC’s go hard on this one.“Go Low” featuring Roc CityProduced by Eric HudsonA throwaway track featuring some dudes named Roc City chanting some Reggae flavor on the hook.  The dull beat sounds like something Eminem would have done.  Nothing special here.  “Gutted” featuring Jay-Z Produced By ReefaThe new slang to describe the actions of broke ballers and fraud willies alike. A few dope lines here.  While this won’t go down as one of those historic collaborations between the Big Homie and Mack; it definitely is a plus to the album.  “Pass The Patron” featuring Diddy, Ghostface, Peedi CrakkThe vibes are lightened with this joint directed at the ladies as Beans gets into his player mode.  Crakk opens up with a lazy but effective delivery and Ghostface all but steals the show with his patented Pretty Toney flow.  The beat is reminiscent of the Ying Yang Twin “Wait (The Whisper Song)” hit with its light drums.  Diddy is on the hook singing so the listener has to really be in tune with the verses to enjoy.  While you will have to credit Sigel for dressing it up, he is better than this song.“Dear Self”Produced by Dre & VidalOne of B-Mac’s most personal records to date as he addresses himself in a mirror type setting.  He points out that he often tries to offset the consequences of his innate hood mentality with Islamic name dropping in his verses.  Opening up his more serious side throughout the entire session, it is an embraced change of subject matter amongst all the gun talk.  “Rain (Bridge)” featuring Scarface and Raheem Devaughn Produced By ReefaYou know how Rae and Ghost, Kiss and Styles got that undeniable chemistry?  Well add Brad and Dwight to the list.  Bluesy pianos give the track a somber feel as Face goes in on it circa The Diary days.  Sigel is no slouch either delivering some memorable bars on this deep album cut.  By the end of the night the energy was no longer the same.  The feeling of excitement that was so thick earlier on has thinned out along with the attendance; as a sizeable chunk of the crowd have left. While the music speaks highly to Beanie’s continuous artistic growth from hardnosed street villain to present day made man; on the December 11th the debate will ensue over whether The Solution takes his all star performance on The B. Coming to the next level. Beanie Sigel: Road to Release, Pt. 1

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