Streetz Is Mine
For those who enjoy the high tempo Free can look no further than “North Philly”. The production gives the track a high energy. It’s supported by the famous Peedi Crakk lyric “Welcome to North Philly you’re welcome to come check us” as a sample in front of a high snare, lively beat. Freeway gives you a riff of lyrics that keeps up with the potency of the scratch and rhythm the production gives you. It reminds you of Freeway’s strength to keep the listener entertained even while keeping up the pace of a high tuned sportscar.
For the class of the album, the title is split between two tracks. The 9th Wonder-produced “Rap Money.” Combining Freeway with Young Chris and Tom Hardy, the bass and sample heavy production puts some knock in those speakers. Tom Hardy keeps up with both Freeway and Chris, keeping his tales of trying to come up in the game, keeping his cadence wrapped around 9th spacing producing a slight hypnotic feeling.
On the flipside, there is “Last 2”, which once again features Chris and Beans. The darker production tears away any thought of a feel good track. The atmosphere of black mask and gloves seem to be the perfect environment for the best of State Property to get it in. Any type fear that Beans has lost a step can be cleared after listening to this track. He takes the short time to engage the listener to the same emotion, depth, and prowess he has been serving since The Truth.
Where this album fails however, is the lack of the magic that seems to be missing from the tracks. In albums before, Freeway had a penchant to bring the listener, bounce around but maintain his identity while keeping the listener engaged. With songs like “Free”, he seems to eschew this and turns in a song that would barely make it on a mixtape. It features a lackluster hook with the consistency of a stop and go route.
One of the more egregious tracks, “Make a Move,” doesn’t feel like Freeway at all. For someone who once famously yelled “give me a beat,” he lets almost two minutes pass by on the track without saying a single word. Add in a first verse that seems phoned in from the usually sincere Free and it comes across as a track that seems unfinished. It‘s a head scratcher as to why this is even included on the album.
There are parts of this album that can really show why Free wanted to separate himself from the Streetz Is Mine. It misses the pop that made Freeway a critical success, when he misses the commercial mark. The energy and the sincerity seem to be missing to the point that this lands on the outside of his usual rating. However, there are a handful of glimpses of the magic that's made Free a monster for almost a decade, with a bright independent feature.