(This final Reader Review of the year is one of the funniest ones I've seen in a while: you two will need to step your writing game up now. It comes from Andrew, who gives Lil' Boosie's Bad Azz its due. As I choose to not know what a Lil' Boosie is, I'm going to step away now: leave your thoughts in the comment section below.)
Arguably the greatest rapper of his generation, Torrence Hatch, aka Lil’ Boosie, dropped his studio debut Bad Azz in 2006. While many folk somehow managed to sleep on this gem (though it did move 41,000 units in its first week according to Wikipedia), the release of the mainstream classic “Wipe Me Down (Remix)” ensured that Sir Boosie’s music would not go unheard. The presence of Lil’ Boosie in the rap game begs many philosophical hip-hop questions: Is the album good? Can Boosie entertain for multiple tracks? Why is my dick hard right now? With this review, I should be able to answer two of these meaty questions.
Bad Azz was surprisingly booed by critics, and I personally think that is a worse crime than murder. Coincidentally, Boosie was hit with a first-degree murder charge in 2010, and he is now tragically serving time for selling innocent narcotics such as codeine, ecstasy, and marijuana.
While selling drugs and homicide were in Boosie’s near future, he managed to stay relatively focused and dropped what I consider to be a cohesive album. Sticking to his in-house Trill Entertainment producers Mouse (J. Allen) and B.J. (B. Rome), Boosie was able to create a consistent sound throughout seventeen tracks, something I know all you hip-hop head backpacker fucks out there appreciate.
Now for the album.
1.WHEN YOU GONNA DROP
Boosie does not like it when somebody interviews him about his career choices, as evidenced by this introductory track. Skipping the intro that Max would’ve surely despised, Boosie decides to update the audience on his current lifestyle. I’m not a big fan of the production found here, but Boosie’s lyrics are pure: “This album gonna be the sickest, that’s on my pops / He put that dang-a-lang in my momma 9 months later I dropped.” If you can get over the fact that he rhymed "pops" with "dropped", then you might be ready for this album. Solid track, but not my favorite of his.
2. SET IT OFF
I’m sure many people say things like this about Boosie: “He’s a mainstream douche”; “Boosie’s voice sounds like a squirrel’s orgasm”;“Boosie an ugly ass n---a”, etc. One thing that cannot be debated is that he brings a lot of energy to the table. I once read a news report about a wanksta down in the dirty dirty singing the lyrics to "Set It Off" aloud as he casually strolled down the street. Thank Boosie for putting that criminal in jail where he belongs. Oh, and this track is pretty badass, but I’ve sadly played it out. The production here knocks and Boosie brings his unique sense of humor to the forefront: “Now I’m the nipples on the titty, the motor called a Hemi.” I found it easy to relate to the titty/nipples line.
3. ZOOM (FEAT. YUNG JOC)
When I first heard this song, I hated it more than the first time I pre-ejaculated in my pants. Now it’s a bit more serviceable to me, as is my dick game. Yung Joc, of “It’s Goin Down” fame, stops by to drop off a steaming turd of a guest verse and a mediocre chorus that probably earned him more income than my lifetime savings. The beat here is somewhat catchy, but the lyrics are very pedestrian. I think this song is exactly what Boosie wanted it to be: an ignorant radio hit and a potential club banger. Too bad it achieved neither of those lofty goals.
Now this track is what I call "classic Boosie". Like myself, Boosie seems to express himself best when he is in a fit of rage. He channels this inner anger that likely arose from the constant shame of being a black man with a chipmunk’s voice into a diatribe against all the fake rappers gettin’ money. The beat and the lyrics somehow work (don’t ask me how). An obvious highlight from the song goes: “Hannibal Lecter one of you bitches, cut yo tongue and make you eat it.” I couldn’t paint a clearer picture if I was on fifteen milligrams of Adderall. Mad props to Boosie Boo.
5. THAT’S WHAT THEY LIKE
This song should probably be entitled Lil Boosie’s Hitchhiker's Guide To Getting The Ladies Wet, cause his swagger on this track made me wish I was the lady keeping his bed warm. Boosie uses the aptly named title of his song and extends the thought for three entertaining verses, sharing his secrets to wowing the bitches. I actually love this beat, and I think Boosie straight laced it in a way other rappers can’t. My favorite track so far.
6. I REMEMBER
Technically this is Lil Boosie’s third concept song in a row. How bout dem titties? While the last two songs were much more braggadocious, this song finds Boosie in an endearing state of reflection. He essentially chronicles his entire life in this one track, and it really hits home. I’m convinced that Boosie is capable of remembering each and every single moment of his life, the obvious sign of a genius. The mellow production complements his lyrics perfectly. A definite standout, and a big F-U to anyone who thinks Boosie is some mainstream puppet.
7. SOFT TO HARD (FEAT. BIG HEAD & FOXX)
Bringing along his boys from the aforementioned Trill Entertainment label, Boosie and company proceed to explain how they are all adept as chefs in the kitchen. (Chefs of crack cocaine, that is.) I’ve been told by my friends and some douches that I’m very gullible, but I’m almost certain these guys have cooked crack with the best of them. The beat here is pretty fucking dope, and everyone handles it rather nicely. The track isn’t groundbreaking, but it is rather enjoyable.
8. MY STRUGGLE
Borrowing liberally from Adolf Hitler’s classic book Mein Kampf (I’m Jewish, so I can say that.), Boosie decides to tell the story of his own struggle, alongside some fitting production. Boosie’s life makes mine look like a fairytale; if fairytales were full of stories about guys who don’t get laid very often and write Reader Reviews for HHID. Now back to the song. This is another track where Boosie spills the thoughts and feelings he experienced through a life in the ghetto. Why should you care about Boosie’s plight? That’s a pretty good question, but I do care, so deal with it.
9. I'M MAD
Never has there been a better song for when you’re angry. It is simultaneously infuriating and hilarious at the same time, so when you listen to it you can channel your fury into something special. My favorite section of the chorus goes: “I’m mad, I’m mad, bitch you done made me mad.” I experience feelings like that rather frequently, but Boosie is far better at expanding upon said feelings. The beat, once again, fits the lyrics like a glove. Show some love for the no name in-house Trill Entertainment producers.
10. MY N---A
Where do I even start with this song? So many pure memories. I’ve got to give a shoutout to my BFF Rap Masta Rui, I see you dawg. If you have a best friend, I highly suggest downloading this song and playing it in the car with him/her. It is a bonding experience that I can guarantee will last a lifetime. Boosie is in full storytelling mode once again, talking about his n----s back at home, something I’ve never seen a rapper do as truthfully as Boosie. You can tell he is name-dropping his real homeys, or maybe he was just being really creative with the names. I’m not going to say this again, but the beat really complements the lyrics. Maybe my ears are full of wax, but I feel like the producers and Boosie really gelled on this album. Classic track.
11. I REPRESENT (FEAT. WEBBIE)
I’m reppin the Jews 24/7, but Boosie and Webbie choose not to represent just one thing. In fact, they represent everything from Hurricane Katrina to their brothas slangin' in the hood. Covering such a wide variety of topics within the scope of one song would be an impossible feat for most, but Boosie and Webbie clearly rise to the occasion. Who is Webbie, you ask? Webbie is the quasi-official co-leader of the barely-breathing Trill Entertainment movement alongside Boosie. If you haven’t heard of Webbie, you probably don’t get out much or your personality sucks, but Webbie is like fine wine. He fucking rocks. Him and Boosie trade bars over a fun beat, and this track was clearly designed to lighten the mood before Boosie brings you to tears once again. This song isn’t meant to lyrically overwhelm you, but it is bouncy and infectious.
Let me start off by saying: fuck haters. It is one thing to hate on a douche in a bro tank, but hating on Boosie should be criminal. All he wanted to do was make some rap music from the heart, and he achieved that despite all the struggles that come with being a black man in the dirty south. Critique him all you want, but this line proves that he understands hate is to be expected: “They hated Dr. King and they hated when he marched / they hated Malcolm X and they hated Rosa Parks.” I’m starting to wonder if Boosie is an undercover scholar, but I don’t want to start any rumors. Let me go out on a small limb here and say that the man knows his shit. The whole point of this song is that haters gon’ hate, and you’ve got to deal with it because it is inevitable. Bad Azz is full of life’s little lessons. Maybe Boosie is Jesus reincarnated. But I digress.
13. FUCK YOU (FEAT. PIMP C & WEBBIE)
At this point it is rather obvious that Boosie can lyrically mindfuck you to completion through powerful simplicity, or he can just have loads of fun on the track. Surrounded by the all-star cast of UGK's Pimp C (R.I.P.) and Webbie, all three rappers proceed to pillage this track like thieves in the night. Wave your arms around and dance to this song, and you’ll understand its beauty. Or maybe you won’t. Not everyone has the same musical tastes. Boosie and company work this track like Muhammad Ali in his prime. In other words they murder this track figuratively and literally. Maybe the words they use aren’t longer than six letters, but who ever said long words are better?
14. EXCITING (FEAT. WEBBIE)
As exciting as the name of the track is, this is probably my least favorite track on the album, but that doesn’t mean it is awful. Bad Azz is so good that the worst track is still pretty solid. Webbie and Boosie spit over a trill beat that they are more than capable of handling, and they entertain as always. I think I’m underrating this track, so I’ll let you decide for yourself.
15. DISTANT LOVER
I’ve only cried a few times in my life, but I wish I could cry to this track. If you’ve seen The Notebook with your girlfriend, or masturbated to The Notebook alone, you’ll be able to relate to this song. Love is special, but distant love is magical. Here’s a fair warning: if you listen to "Distant Lover", you just might call up that girl, you know, the one you want to be with but have been avoiding so you don’t seem needy, and you will regret it. All I ask is that you don’t blame Boosie for speaking from the heart.
16. GOIN' THRU SOME THANGS
Misspelling of the word “through” aside (unless Boosie’s childhood was spent in the McDonald’s drive-thru), this song can be appreciated by people of all shapes and colors. Everyone from rich to poor will at some time struggle, even Boosie. Perhaps the retrospective nature of this album has grown old to you by now, but I cannot seem to get enough of Boosie’s pearls of wisdom. If you’ve listened to the album until this point, then you are probably smarter than you were approximately thirty-five minutes ago, so pat yourself on the back. Free Boosie.
17. SMOKIN' ON PURPLE (FEAT. WEBBIE)
Potheads rejoice: Boosie made a track for the stoners. This has to be one of the best marijuana-related rap songs, which is a bold statement considering every rapper has made a weed track at some point. The beat here is perfect for hotboxing your car with your buds, and the rappers know how to ride the beat. You should be blazing a doobie right now as you read my pointless words.
(Bad Azz concludes with the following bonus track.)
18. WIPE ME DOWN (REMIX) (FEAT. FOXX & WEBBIE)
My nickname in high school was Mr. Wipe Me Down after I karoaked to this track on the high school stage with one of my friends. The only people that did karaoke at my school were either mentally disabled or insane, so I guess I’m mentally disabled. This is definitely one of my favorite mainstream tracks, and the sole reason that anyone knows who Lil’ Boosie is. Words won’t give this track its due, so wipe yourself down and know that you are listening to one spectacular track. Thank you, Boosie.
FINAL THOUGHTS: Obviously I’m a bit biased, but I found Bad Azz to be a classic album. If you have any doubt at this point, please look at the thumbs up to thumbs down ratios for every track on YouTube and you’ll notice I’m not the only Lil’ Boosie dickrider. There are many people that have ridden his dick. This album really doesn’t include any throwaway tracks, and that is rare in the rap game. I’m not saying this is like Nas’s Illmatic or Mobb Deep’s The Infamous, but for a Southern album, it is definitely upper echelon. Do yourself and your mother a favor and listen to a few tracks, and if you don’t like it, then maybe it just isn’t your cup of tea.
BUY OR BURN? I, however, am a proud owner of this album, and I feel that Boosie deserves the cash so he can hit the strip club once he is freed from prison. Again, FREE BOOSIE.
BEST TRACKS: Depends on your taste I suppose, but my favorites are "My N---a", "Smokin’ On Purple",and "Distant Lover". Boosie’s album is pretty much a personality test.
(Questions? Comments? General sense of confusion? Leave your thoughts below.)