Forthepeople Ent. has done it again. With the previous release of Kurupt’s “Against Tha Grain: EP”, the Deathrow catelogue sees another release in the last inmate to record a full album for the label – Petey Pablo. To be honest, however, Petey Pablo isn’t your typical Deathrow artist. He’s not from the West Coast, and actually seemed out of place when first signing to Tha Row in 2005. This is his highly anticipated (but never released) Deathrow debut – “Same Eyez On Me.”
1.) We’re Blown: Great way to set off the album. Proving that he’s capable of riding West Coast beats, Petey gracefully performs the hook (“Puff, puffin that Cali dro, sippin on Patrone/I got my mind made up, and gotdammit we’re blown”), proving that phenomonal lyricism is not needed to make a great track.
2.) Same Eyez On Me: WOW just about sums this track up. The production on this song is flawless. While most listeners we’re probably expecting some sort of remix to 2Pac’s “All Eyez On Me”, this track takes a complete turn to the opposite, as Petey details coming up over this pounding West Coast instrumental. From the hook to the verses, this track is nothing less then classic; and easily the best song on the album.
3.) Everywhere I Go: Petey’s dirty south roots are fully exposed on this track, as he gives the hook that North Carolina drawl. However, the lyrics and delivery Petey offers are just below average, making for a just below average track. Decent at best.
4.) I’m Makin Movez: While most listeners would be turned away after listening to the first 20 seconds of this song, Petey Pablo fully redeems this terrible hook, with superb verses, over this bouncing instrumental. The only downfall to this track, is there is no real substance, and the hook and beat aren’t anything excellent. Average track to say the least.
5.) I’ll Beat Yo Azz feat. Kurupt: After the last two dissapointments, Petey returns with fellow inmate Kurupt to present the world with true Deathrow flavor. Both rappers bring energy to the track, and while the hook is once again underachieving, this song is entertaining to any fan (past or present) of Tha Row.
6.) It Ain’t Fair: Petey Pablo is no stranger to music with substance. From the passionate tracks on his previous albums, he has proved that heartfelt, emotional songs don’t always have to revolve around lyricism, and a hot 16. This is a perfect example. A great slowed down tempo is provided, as Petey states his problem with society today. Good track.
7.) So Crazy feat. 2Pac: Any artist ever signed to Deathrow after Tupac’s passing, is almost guarenteed some sort of remix with him. It’s almost as if it’s stated in Deathrow’s contract. Petey Pablo is no different. However, while some collaborations have worked, this unfortunatley doesn’t. 2Pac’s classic So So Def diss record, has been tampered with and edited unbelievably. While production is on point, this track is somewhat of a dissapointment, considering it was a battle record before a club friendly track.
8.) Push It Away: This song unfortunatley is the first bad song on the album. Everything from the beat to Petey’s singing the hook (not that great), make for a boring and lackluster effort. Skip it.
9.) Too Much feat. Kurupt, Eastwood: While keeping in mind that the production on this track is very simple (with nothing extraordinary about it), Kurupt, Eastwood, and even Petey Pablo display their skill on the mic, making for another good track, and showcasing the talent Deathrow had up until 2005.
10.) Somebody About To Get It: Finally, Petey’s gangsta side is presented on the album. And while, once again, the lyrics aren’t anything exceptional, the beat, simplicity, and overall truth in Petey’s raps make for a good track. The chorus is one of the only drawbacks, as Pablo’s hook writing skills need to be polished before stepping in to the booth.
11.) Set The Record Straight: Along with “Same Eyez On Me”, this song is truly one of the album’s gems. Petey promises to “set the records straight” and does just that, detailing his come up and eventual signing to the now nototrious Deathrow Records. From the lyrics to the suprisingly great hook, this is Petey Pablo at his best.
12.) Simple & Plain: Simple and plain just about describes this song to a tee. The production sounds eerily familiar, and verses lack anything not said in another song. Decent at best, and one of the albums filler tracks.
13.) Holla At Ya Folkz: Midway through the album, it is terribly obvious that Petey’s hooks are a major, major fault. This is another below average song that sounds too rushed, and is really about nothing at all. Skip it.
14.) Let’s Do It: Full Metal Jacket’s “me so horny” sample is used here, as this track is an attempt by Petey at appealing to the ladies. The beat, however, lacks any punch, and isn’t soft enough to appeal to the ladies, making for another below average track. Typical boasts about the player lifestyle offer nothing new to the table.
15.) What Cha Gonna Do?: This is more of Petey’s style. A perfect club anthem, this track features an Arabian inspired flute, with Petey perfectly crooning the looping and pounding beat, with a perfect touch of southern flavor. Great production usually always makes for a great track; and even Petey’s hook manages to get the job done on this song.
16.) That’s Why: After listening to the first 30 seconds of this song, one would think that the track has the potential to be a classic. A pounding instrumental is used, but Petey’s hook is lackluster, and the verses aren’t hitting hard at all. Production is well above average, but unfortunatley Petey doesn’t do the beat justice. Average.
17.) In Your Casket: By now it’s clear that the majority of this album is catered to the players, ballers, and gangsters. However, this song will be a complete suprise to most listeners, as Petey goes into horror-core hip hop, and works this dark production well. An uptempo bassline is used, as Petey provides the perfect energy and delivery, making for one of the best tracks on the album.
18.) In A Minute: It was too good to be true. 17 songs into the album, and while it appears that one Deathrow artist has finally stepped into his own, and not expressed Suge’s personal problems on wax, don’t hold you’re breath. Petey Pablo (of all rappers) decides to diss Dr. Dre, Eminem, Snoop Dogg, Nate Dogg, 50 Cent, Young Buck, and The Game all on one track. Not only that, it’s not even done well. If you’re going to diss an entire label, pull your guns out and come correct. This song features production ripped straight from the Lil Jon formula, and is the worst way to the end the album.
In conclusion, while Petey Pablo surprises most listeners with his unofficial Deathrow debut, it’s still clear as day that no matter how he was marketed, Petey wasn’t going to bring Tha Row back to prominence. However, Petey succeeds at what most Deathrow artists not named Dre, Snoop, or Pac, failed at; and that’s making a well rounded album. While this is probably not the last album to be released by Forthepeople Entertainment from Petey Pablo, let’s hope that if further material surfaces, it’s a little more original then what has been presented.
Overall Rating: 3/5