Guilty Simpson is an emcee with skills that also has a knack for working with some of the dopest producers in the game. From his work with J Dilla to Black Milk, Guilty gets it in. As always, Madlib is a busy man, dropping more releases than No Limit in the 90s. The LP OJ Simpson brings the duo together as this is Guilt’s album produced exclusively by Madlib. As another release in the long line of hip-hop’s super-producer/emcee collaborations the question is, does it live up to history?
Frankly, OJ Simpson begins slowly with two unnecessary introductions. Once the album kicks into full gear, it makes you wonder why they delayed the start. The lead vocal track, “OJ Simpson” comes off well, with Guilty flowing perfectly over a Madlib head nodder. After two more interludes, the album continues with “New Heights”, another dope track that reminds the listener of a mid 90′s Wu Tang banger. With no letting down, “Karma of Kingpin” follows and again grabs the listener with both a fantastically sampled beat and nasty Guilty Simpson flowing effortlessly. The decent “Coroners Music” follows, but does not hold a candle to the standout track “Back on the Road Again”. The essence of the track is in the sick sample and beat given for Guilty to flow over as he describes the tour life.
As it continues with “Hood Sentence” and “Cali Hills”, OJ Simpson, slows down a little musically, but maintains its fine work. The production on the album is extremely strong and consistent with every track vocal track being an audible treat. Other tracks to check for include the dope “Scratch Warning” , “Outside” featuring Strong Arm Steady, the dope by criminally short “Trendsetters” and tunnel banging “100 Styles”. The only weak track is “Mic Check 313″, which is not a terrible track, but is just weak in comparison to the rest of the tracks.
Though it may be seen as a positive as the album moves along, I found the bevy of interludes infuriating. OJ Simpson is a 24 track LP, with 11 interludes/intermissions, some of which are two to four minutes long. Most tracks are followed by one or two interludes that serve to just stop the flow of the album. Ninety percent of the interludes are skippable, which makes them unnecessary. Otherwise, OJ Simpson is musically dope, with a collection of engrossing beats perfectly matched to Guilty Simpson. Though the album’s namesake is a pariah, this OJ Simpson is well worth bringing into your home.
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