Obie Trice – Special Reserve Review

Alright I have always been an Obie Trice fan – I liked his first album quite a bit and just thought he was overall a good MC.  One of my problems with him was the production he got when he was on Shady Records…Eminem is probably my least favorite producer himself, and as a whole Shady Records haven’t had a track record of production I love…especially lately.

Well this Obie album is a bit different – he has enlisted one producer: MoSS.  I don’t know a ton about MoSS but I know I have liked what I heard from him.  Plus I think he is from Toronto – so gotta show some love to local talent.  I also know that I love when Rappers go with one producer, gives an album a cohesive sound.  It also means you don’t have 11 different producers all trying to produce the radio hit.

***DISCLAIMER*** This review is based off of a leaked version of this album, tracklisting, sequencing or songs may differ from retail release***

1. Welcome – Album opens up with a menacing beat.  I don’t know how to explain it but it reminds me of a beat Ghostface would rhyme over.  This is a quick intro track, and I hope the rest of the album has this kind of production.  Obie sounds good on this, good mic presence.

2. Got Hungry – Another banging beat, so far so good from MoSS.  This is just a great boom bap beat, right down to the Preemo-esque scratches.  Obie matches the song title with a hungry flow, rapping about his life, I like the personal touch.

3. You Have Been Slain
– This beat has an eerie feel, it samples some halloween music maybe?  Some distorted steel drums add to the atmopshere.  Obie raps from the perspecitve of someone who is dying.  I know it has been done before, but Obie pulls it off well.

4. On & On
– This is ahead nodder, great drums on this.  Pretty basic beat, but really well executed.  Taking neck breaking snares, add piano keys and it doesn’t matter what else you have on the beat, I am hooked. Moss is niiiice with the scratches.  He weaves the vocal sample into the chorus beautifully.  Obie matches the beat with some funny lyrics, his flow has been on point all album so far.

5. I Am
– Another banging beat. This isn’t an album you are going to put on to play as background music.  Beats like this demand your attention. Great gym song here, this beat pumps me up.  Obie Trice is in full shit talking mode on this one. In fact most of these songs so far, he has been in taht mode.

6. 4 Stories
– Old school sounding beat, sounds like the background Shaft singers on the vocal sample.  Some nice scratching again.  Again Obie doesn’t really say a lot – like he isn’t a guy who is gonna hit you with a ton of concepts, but it is fun to listen to him talk shit.

7. Roughnecks
– This album so far – very cohesive.  MoSS isn’t fooling round – he is going straight boom bap.  Great drums again, and I think some sort of organ sample…again it works.  A real 90’s feel to these beats, in a good way.

8. Coolcats
– This beat reminds me of something I would hear off of one of Shadys old albums – but much more organic.  I find the beat kind of corny.  It reminds me of a Looney Tune cartoon – not sure that makes sense but it does.  Obie is good again – nothing new with the subject matter though.

9. What You Want
– Another beat I am not feeling totally – it is OK but it has a circus feel to it.  Again it reminds me of Looney Tunes – I must have that on my mind or something.  Someone needs to confirm I am not the only one getting that from these past 2 beats.

10. Jack My Dick – Hmmm song opens with what sounds like Obie…finishing…nah pass, next song.

11. Dope, Jobs, Homeless
– I like this beat – again pretty simple but the great use of horns.  Obie is on some gritty realty vibe here – I like his rhyme son this, I think it was refreshing to have him touch on some personal history.

All in all – this is an OK album.  MoSS is a guy to look out for in my opinion. I think we are going to hear a lot of great beats coming from this guy.  I liked the overall cohesiveness of the album but sometimes with the newer generation boom bap, the beats kind of blend in together after repeated listening.  I can’t say that will happen here, but albums with similar production – I’d compare this to Slaughterhouse and recent Sean P haven’t aged well with me.

Obie is cool, I have always like dhim and he did nothing to change that.  Would I like him to switch up his subject matter a bit..maybe, but then again I listen to Clipse so who am I to complain.

The Man The Myth The Legend

  • iBrowz

    Maybe you should re-review this album again with the knowledge that this is OLD Obie music, from the 96 - 2000! Do your research man.

    You have touched upon the fact that the beats sound 90s and all that so you seem to know a little bit.

    The album is on non stop in my itunes I love it! Great tracks from both Moss and Obie and can't wait for Bottom's Up! I love Obie for his great lyrics and humour, cool production too. Favourites have to be Got Hungry, I Am, and Dope Jobs Homeless. There aren't any tracks which I dislike though, great album.

  • Hey - thanks for the heads up on when the music was made. Obviously now it makes sense why it sounded like it was produced in the 90s.

    Of course I disagree I need to re-review the album. That fact doesn't change how the music sounds to me, and that is what really counts.

    Thanks for the added info tho.

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