Freddie Gibbs & Madlib - Pinata Revisited

Andrew "DaBoyAG" Barnett

What do you do after you break a pinata open? You go through all of the stuff inside right? Well it’s the end of the year and it’s time for me to take Freddie Gibbs and Madlib’s “Pinata” album and break it open all over again. When the album was released on March 18, 2014, by March 23 I was already ready to call it album of the year with a 9.5/10 rating. The album is everything you can ask for from a pure hip hop album. Everything comes together in a beautiful sequence, the samples, the beats, the rapping, and the vibe. 9 months later I still have this album in my top 5 albums of the year. Never lost replay value for me over the whole year.

Madlib’s production and sample placement on this album has captured my mind all year. Every beat is just intricately crafted into a sonic masterpiece, the way he chopped his samples, placed his sounds, and arranged his drum patterns are truly a work of art. As a lover of music, I thoroughly appreciated the attention to detail. So much so that I had to cop the instrumental version of this album just to hear how great the production was. On the song “Real” you can hear just how great this man’s production skills really are.

That being said, Gibbs came through heavy with the rapping. Gibbs might not be the most lyrical rapper but his lyrics catch your ears and leave a sting. The album is full of quotables and gems laced within Gibbs’s superior flow. He was able to sound comfortable on every song while not limiting himself, because he did several different kinds of songs. There’s a song for everyone. I honestly don’t think any other rapper would have been able to use the beats on this album any better than Gibbs. He worked every beat perfectly.

A few quotables:

“Chefing up the crack, the heroin, and the weed a la carte,
I call it Fast Freddie's, I should own a f**kin' restaurant.
Cuz back when I was 12 threw some bells on a scale and I got a pager
We broke them down and started selling nickels to the neighbors
Eventually the penitentiary gon' see me later
Kiss my momma, told her if I die, then it was part of nature” - “Bomb”

“This white devil society dare a n*gga to do drugs
And dare yo ass to deal 'em, distribute and conceal 'em
My niggas don't got no boats or no ports, how you think we get 'em?
Crack was black America's cup of coffee in the beginning
When it crept up where you at, guess you crackers couldn’t fight the feeling
Motherf**k euthanasia, I'll lace your food up with razors
Make you gargle with saltwater, excuse yourself from my table” - “Sh*tsville”

“I live on borrowed time, my expiration date I passed it
So lock me up forever, but this sh*t is everlasting” - “Thuggin”

This album has maintained it’s replay value over the course of the year and remains one of the best hip hop albums to be released this year.