A lot of time has lapsed since DMX’s 1998 debut, It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot, and frankly, it is evident when listening to the Yonkers, NY native’s new mixtape. The Weigh In, which debuted at 2PM today (May 15), is a collection of new songs and mixtape joints.
One upon a time, DMX’s scattershot frantic, staccato style was a dependable anchor that held down just about any song he appeared on. But, when he’s on songs like “Where I Wanna Be,” he really sounds like a punch-drunk version of himself. He’s got the fight, but the sharpness really isn’t there like the late ’90s and 2000s. On “Sh*t Don’t Change,” Snoop Dogg joins his fellow dog for a remake of 2009’S “Boss Life.” If you didn’t know this was a regurgitation, it would be possible to enjoy the song, but this record was an old Dr. Dre-produced hit.
All is not lost. The song “Last Hope,”which came out last year shows the depth and reaffirms why we still love DMX:
Even though “Lost Hope” is a reworking of an obscure artist named Dizzy Dao, we’ll accept it into DMX’s repertoire of music. But neither “That’s My Baby,” which features Tyrese, a scant Lil Wayne blip, or “Wright or Wrong” help salvage The Weigh In from the recycle bin, sadly enough.
Lastly, the actual audio quality of The Weigh In seems to be severely compromised and suffers from a lack of funding. The mix-down sounds as if it was done in somebody’s bedroom lined by egg crates, not Quad Studios where It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot was masterfully recorded. The music sounds dated and, honestly, terrible. DMX represents, not only a successful legacy in Hip-Hop, but an era that has seen better days. Hopefully, those of us that are fans of the dog will be blessed with a work of art in his upcoming album, Undisputed, that really reflects his past, or a rich future in music is not promised in this era.
There’s no love lost for DMX, just disappointment. At least, all dogs to go heaven, no matter what.