Music Is My Savior

Artist: MIMSTitle: Music Is My SaviorRating: 3 StarsReviewed by: Paine

Music is MIMS' savior, but many New York Hip-Hop enthusiasts refuse to accept the first new face to top the charts as their own. No less, Music is My Savior (EMI/Capitol) is saving his label after three years of lackluster efforts from veterans and newcomers alike. The Washington Heights hopeful delivers an introduction that guises its simplicity with irresistible hooks and catchy beats.

"Super Man" is not why MIMS is hot, despite it being nearly a sequel to his ubiquitous smash. The slow, simplistic flow driven by cadence becomes the signature delivery. The metronome drives MIMS on "It's Alright," "Big Black Train" and "I Did You Wrong" too. The one not like the others is "Doctor Doctor," where the rapper makes a track that sounds similar to Joe Budden’s breakthrough ("Calm Down") with its humble, confessional aesthetic, but with each revelation, MIMS quickly reminds the reader that he's now famous, wealthy, and loved by the ladies. Music is My Savior is as lyrically deep as the track titles would lead skeptics to believe, but much-like his Southern influences, MIMS doesn't seem to care.

Production is another story. Just as Polow Da Don is to thank for adding emotion to Rich Boy's boasts and cries of triumph, The Blackout Movement throws MIMS John Stockton-like assists with several of the album's better offerings. "They Don't Wanna Play" is one part Sci-Fi film score, and one part club anthem, with it's many sampled accents and key stabs. "It's Alright" is a brassy heater, with the same dramatic production that got the beat-making duo noticed in the first place. The lone high-profile contribution from Kanye West, "I Did You Wrong" sounds a few years old with its chirped echo, which it may very well be.

You can get with this or you can get with that. Just as Rich Boy offered his own album built around a huge single, MIMS follows suit. Both debuts have lots of thanks owed to their producers. This is the best nationally appreciated club music from a New York artist in years. Though it fits nicely onto dance-floors and radio waves, Music is MIMS lifeline, for without it on this album, he’d have little to offer.