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27 December, 2014@1:52 am

Over the course of his last three albums or so, Rick Ross has proven that he is more than just a guy that makes nightclub drug dealer anthems like “BMF” and “Hustlin’.” But you wouldn’t know that from his singles; you’d have to dig deeper into his catalog to find his brand of more soulful selections, which he has demonstrated on albums like God Forgives, I Don’t, Teflon Don, and Mastermind, the latter released earlier this year. With Hood Billionaire, the slimmest bawse that you’ve seen thus far attempts to take a victory lap with a second LP for 2014.

The stage was set perfectly with the buzzworthy single “Movin Bass,” featuring Ross floating on top of a dope Timbaland beat, with Jay Z on the hook. But the hype train was derailed a bit when Timbaland released the original demo, outshining it with extra tag-team verses with Jay and rising Chicago female talent, Tink, as the three emcees finished each other’s lines in a dynamic display of delivery. The album’s lead single, “If They Knew,” featuring K. Michelle followed, but with little fanfare.

Ross is at his best when tapping into that laid back, smooth gangster vibe, as he does on the previously released “Keep Doin That (Rich Bitch)” (feat. R. Kelly), the DJ Toomp helmed “Quintessential,” with Snoop Dogg, and “Family Ties,” which winds the album down. This formula of utilizing classic soul samples and mellow production has been a win for Ross on his last few records, however Hood Billionaire follows his other M.O., relying heavily on the Lex Lugar / “B.M.F.” style tracks.

The best of these is the title track, produced by Lugar himself, which finds him brilliantly stuttering the female “Maybach Music” sample, chopped into such a fraction that it’s almost inaudible, subtly reminding you its there. This, meshed with a rolling piano loop sets Lugar’s lone selection apart from the host of imitations that the rest of the album is overloaded with.

With many of these more ignorant selections dominating the playlist, songs like “Elvis Presley Boulevard,” “Burn,” “Neighborhood Drug Dealer,” and “Coke Like The 80s” all begin to run together, essentially acting as different versions of the same song. Each find Ross over more abrasive, Lugar-esque production, while he repeats the hook-which is many times just the title of the song-over and over again.

Ross may have taken this approach to appease his longtime fans that enjoy standing on couches and buying bottles to his tracks, overloading the album with these types of songs after delivering albums with more substance over the last few years. In either case, Hood Billionaire undoubtedly proves that Rick Ross doesn’t take days off, as he told us on his debut single (“Everyday I’m hustlin…”). However there’s also such a thing as overkill.

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3 Responses to "Rick Ross – “Hood Billionaire” – @@1/2 [Review]"
  • Ozziebattle says:

    What is going on here pizzo? Takes you forever to review droog then you give it a half assed review mean while missing so many good relese on to show love to rick? For a @@1/2 review. Why man why?

  • killbobby says:

    and..wu tang is 3 stars compared to this…

  • D.G says:

    I haven’t heard the Album and don’t waste too much time checking for Ross because all of his material is essentially the same, you heard one you heard them all.

    I personally think that this album is the beginning of the end for Ross….

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