Drive Slow (Mixtape)

Artist: GLC & A-TrakTitle: Drive Slow (Mixtape)Rating: 3 1/2 StarsReviewed by: Conan Milne

If you want something done, do it yourself. While Chicago’s GLC could have sat back and waited for Kanye to release his major label debut, the rapper instead takes the admirable route of creating a buzz for himself without the aid of the normally ever-present Good Music leader. Teaming with ‘Ye’s tour DJ, A-Trak, GLC offers up Drive Slow, a mixtape with all the makings of a first album.

After an acclaimed performance on “Spaceship” on the Louis Vuitton Don’s The College Dropout release, several tracks on Drive Slow prove that GLC is much more than a one verse wonder. Reworking The Game’s hit “Dreams”, the rapper pledges his loyalty to Chi-City with the self-referential “The city where he from? He even put it on his arm!.” His deep, booming drawl sounding right at home over the thuds of the beat and the “ah’s” of the backing vocals, the casual listener could be forgiven for thinking that the cut was tailor made for West’s protégé and not the West Coast savior.

Drive Slow works best, however, as a showcase for the different styles that GLC can deliver. While he serves up notable punchlines on his afore-mentioned take on “Dreams”, “Can’t Complain” shows that this talented newcomer will not be denied, having overcome personal tragedy to attain his label deal and putting it best when he states briefly, “I lost my mom, and I lost my man, but I never lost my grind/It’s my time”. “Space Age Pimpin”, on the other hand, sees GLC spit explicit lyrics over a soothing, other worldly sounding beat. All the while, A-Trak spins the tables and shows just why he’s garnished such acclaim from impressed concertgoers, besides turntablism fans, across the globe.

At less than 50 minutes, including a handful of somewhat unnecessary skits, this project could have done with a slightly larger tracklist. Some may be disappointed that Kanye is noticeably absent, although this only allows GLC to display just why he’s next up to claim the fame. While the rapper may be easing on the gas on this release, the music served up here suggests that the self-titled “bad seed of Good Music” is ready to get into the race began by Mr. West, John Legend and Common, respectively, and is capable of carrying the Good Music baton.

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