Tower Heist marks Eddie Murphy’s triumphant return to adult comedy. While, it may not be a classic of Beverly Hills Cop or Coming to America status, it’s a great date night action comedy with a dazzling cast.
Check out these shots from the premiere, featuring appearances from Tracy Morgan and Megan Wollover, Diddy, Donald Trump, Serena Williams, Nas and more.
The stellar fourth solo album from hip-hop super-producer 9th Wonder features an impressive display of both production and rap skills. Guest spots from Erykah Badu, Khrysis, Talib Kweli, Kendrick Lamar, Murs, Phonte, Raekwon, and Warren G round out the collection.
Full-time producer, part-time professor of a course entitled ‘Hip Hop in Context’, 9th never strays too far from the role of educator. Reuniting with his fellow Little Brother member Phonte on the crooning Band Practice Pt 2, we’re informed that “this is blackboard rap”. On Enjoy, a track full of West Coast bounce, he unites three generations of MCs: Warren G talks of classics and demands respect for the trigger finger; Murs reflects on growing up in a time before Ustream; and the fresh-faced Kendrick talks babysteps. 9th’s mix of experienced and fledging vocalists (who refer to girls as ‘Bonita Applebum’ and ‘Miss Spottieottie’, and reminisce about first hearing Big Daddy Kane and Biggie) combined with his heritage samples serves to reinstate hip hop as a genre concerned with head-nodding: both literally, physically, and by continually acknowledging its ancestors.
Click here to read the full review from BBC.
For years, Hip Hop fans have maintained a cautious admiration for Fabolous. He has proven himself time and time again as a more than competent mixtape maestro and a reliable “featured” artist. However, much like fellow mixtape heroes Cassidy, Joe Budden and Canibus, Fab has never quite been able to answer the age old question: “Who is this guy as an artist?” Well, ladies and gentleman, after 5 full length albums, Loso’s Way finally delivers the answer..for better AND for worse.
The album really hits its stride when Fabolous is throwing out cleaver punchlines and playing up the lavish pretty thug lifestyle made famous by artists like Fab himself and Mase in the late 90’s. His flow on “Fabolous Life,” “My Time” and “Throw It In The Bag” are top notch. The bar is raised even higher when he takes on real subjects and manages to maintain his clever wit. This is exemplified on the album’s stand out tracks “Stay” and the friend-turned-enemy opus “Pachanga,” where he delivers: “When you lose a friend, it’s hard to handle the loss… End up watching friends like Joey, Chandler and Ross.”
Unfortunately, this genuine sense of reality is shattered when Fab’s street dreams get too ambitious. Aspirations of finally taking his place among NY giants Jay-Z, Biggie and Nas lead to some embarrassingly awful moments (like the track “I Miss My Love”). “…Love” attempts to have the suspenseful storytelling of Biggie’s “Somebody Gotta Die,” but instead sounds forced, phony and even a bit corny.
It should be noted that Loso’s Way is overall a nice listen. Once it’s gimmicky intro ends and we look past the (very) loose “Carlito’s Way” concept that birthed the album, we are treated to a diverse and well rounded body of work. Despite some major misses, the album recovers nicely and does it’s job of solidifying that Fabolous is a true talent.
Tracks to check for: “Pachanga,” “My Time,” & “Stay”