“Red Eye”, Curren$y and Jet Life, 8/5/13
by Luke Smith-Stevens on August 13, 2013
Posted in: Album Review, Hip Hop, Music
With Lil Wayne continuing to refute Earth as his planet of origin, the storied New Orleans hip-hop tradition has taken a bit of a step back in recent years. However, former signee to Wayne’s Young Money label, Curren$y is keeping NOLA well represented in the world of raps. His most recent project, Red Eye, dropped Monday as part of a BitTorrent package of music, video, and other media content (you can download just the tunes for free here). Released through Curren$y’s Warner Bros. imprint, Red Eye (a play on the Jet Life moniker and one of the visible side-effects of…alright we probably don’t have to go through that) is essentially a posse tape showcasing the members of Jet Life. As such, it suffers from a disjointedness characteristic to Rapper and Crew projects. Supporting Jets Fiend, Cornerboy P, Dee Low Diamond Man and Young Roddy clearly want to demonstrate their strongest stuff, and their differing styles make for a effort lacking the consistency of the typical Curren$y joint.
That isn’t to say the songs themselves are whack. Fiend leads off with “California Mornings”, a tale of a West Coast getaway with a female companion, “Nothin’ on under the summer dress for fun, whispered to me two days just reduced to one”. By far the most well-established of Curren$y’s entourage, Fiend‘s smooth baritone delivery is always enjoyable, but it’s a little weird right before “Grizzly” which features Young Roddy’s darting, corner-of-the-mouth delivery. On “Right Now”, towards the end of the tape, Curren$y delivers in classic form over one of two excellent Sledgren beats featured on Red Eye, rapping, “No tint on the window still can’t see if I’m innit, cuz my seat back low, and my car fulla smoke”. Spitta doing how he do. But the next two tracks, Deelow Diamond Man’s exceedingly average “Bando” and Fiend’s “On My Job”, which is almost comically out of place on this otherwise laid-back affair, pretty much beg to be skipped.
Curren$y has acquired a huge listenership on the internet, thanks in large part to his many free releases. Spitta fans will enjoy his joints on Red Eye, especially the excellent “Prayer”, the final track which features vocals from Mary Gold. Young Roddy and Cornerboy P also do good work, with styles that compliment their label leader. But if you’re really looking to kick back and throw on some Curren$y, Red Eye is far too halting, stop and start, to live up to the high bar he has set.
Best Line: “No role model though I roll with a model or two…”, Curren$y AKA Spitta Andretti, “Role Model”