Homegrown Review

chris webby

Homegrown (2013) – Chris Webby

Entertainment One Music

Rap/Hip-Hop

Norwalk’s own indie rapper Chris Webby is back at it again with his 2nd EP, Homegrown, following his first EP titled There Goes the Neighborhood.  The EP basically follows the transformation of Chris Webby from a lesser-known rapper to a full-blown artist with swagger.

Even though Chris Webby is starting to make a name for himself, he still has a little ways to go.  I like what I see on the EP but I felt like more could have been done.  The beats featured throughout the album hit the mark and the production seems to be on par, but the lyrics made me cringe and step back a little.

Being a famous artist isn’t all about who can party the hardest and who has the most swag.  Although the rap game does include these facets, they are not the aspects that make an album great.  Deeper lyrics and more thoughtful content make an album stand out from the rest.  Unfortunately that is what Homegrown lacks; thoughtful lyrics.

Tracks like “Down Right” and “Do Like Me” show the raw potential that Webby has. These two tracks feature Webby’s swagger mixed with a great sound that can move an entire club.  They show that Webby has the potential to be the “star” that he raps about.chriswebby

Webby has come a long way since his first EP and all his mix tapes.  He is maturing and learning the ways of the game.  I like what I hear on the album, but there is massive room for improvement. Perhaps his third album will feature Webby at his greatest, because third time’s the charm, right?

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The Marshall Mathers LP 2 Review

marshall_mathers_lp_2-25300851-frntlSlim Shady is back once again with his lyrical flow and controversial riffs.  Eminem’s newest album, The Marshall Mathers LP 2, the follow up to 2002’s The Marshall Mathers LP, is Eminem’s 8th studio album.  The Marshall Mathers LP released to a lot of critical success, which means that Eminem’s follow up has a lot of expectations.

Eminem addressed these expectations in an interview with Rolling Stone when he said, “Calling it the Marshall Mathers LP 2, obviously I knew there was going to be certain expectations.”  The expectations were heavy, and Eminem handled them pretty well.

The album has an old-school vibe all around.  Tracks like “Berzerk” feature samples from the Beastie Boys and Billy Squire.  In the opening track, “Bad Guy”, Eminem celebrates his return and makes numerous references to his original EP.  In his newest album, Eminem makes sure he doesn’t forget his past and what brought him to where he is now.

Eminem also comes with his full dose of controversy that is prominent in a majority of his raps.  His numerous lyrical attacks on pop culture resonates throughout the entire album, making me cringe at every word.  He raps about his relationships with women, which usually never end well, his non-existent relationship with his dad, and even a reference to the Columbine shootings.  Everything is fair game and not safe from Eminem’s mouth.

Eminem breaks down and becomes emotional on some of this tracks, giving us breaks from the cold, hard raps.  In the track “Headlights”, featuring f.u.n. front man Nate Ruess, Eminem goes deep into his relationship with his mom and how he loves her, even though she put the all the blame on Eminem for the divorce with her husband.  Its emotion like this that was nice to see and it left me with a good taste.  Maybe Shady isn’t so bad after all.

The best part of the album is the lyrical genius that Eminem spits in every single rap.  The words flow so well and go together greatly.  In “Rap God”, Eminem raps at a supersonic speed that is unmatched by any other rapper I have ever heard.  It’s this kind of talent and brilliance that made this album one of my favorite albums of the year.

Eminem knew going into this album that a bunch of expectations were going to be put on his shoulders.  Eminem hyped the album a lot, probably more than he should have.  In the song, “The Monster”, featuring Rihanna, Eminem admits that he is friends with the monster under the bed (the hype-machine).  Eminem had a reason to hype this album though, because it is worth all the hype.  It lived up to his first LP without a doubt.

5 Movies You Should See This Holiday

When it comes to movies, the Summer time frame is when the major Hollywood blockbusters make their way to theaters.  Usually winter is reserved for the Oscar hopefuls and other lower-profile releases.  This year, there are a bunch of worthy movies that are coming out, and here are the five you should see:

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (November 22nd)

Even though Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) already won the Hunger Games, they are called back in the sequel for more fighting and bloodshed.  However, the arena for the 25th Hunger Games is in a tropical location this time.  Katniss and Peeta will also be going up against more vicious and experienced fighters.  The 2nd installment in the series based off the hit book series will feature a lot more drama, and more will be at stake.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (December 13th)

The quest for the the stolen treasure of the dragon Smaug continues in the second movie in the highly anticipated big-screen adaptation of the Hobbit book in the Lord of the Rings series.  The first movie was met with positive criticism and the second one is looking to keep the fire of the series going.  The movie will again feature Martin Freeman as Bilbo, Orlando Bloom as Legolas the elf, and the all of the bearded dwarves.

Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (December 20th)

Things are not looking good for the Channel 4 news team, which includes comedy all-stars Will Ferrell, Paul Rudd, Steve Carell, and David Koechner.  The team fell apart and the newsmen separated as well.  However, a new 24 hour news channel is trying to get itself off the ground and the team from Channel 4 is called to man the new station.  The newsroom antics will surely continue and make viewers laugh this holiday.  This will probably be the comedy of the holiday season.

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (December 25th)

The story about Walter Mitty, which is based on the 1939 short story by James Thurber, follows a man who puts himself in crazy adventures throughout history.  Ben Stiller starts as Mitty, as well as directs the movie.  When Walter Mitty gets a job as a photo editor for Time Magazine, he has to force himself to leave his fantasies and adventures behind him.

The Wolf of Wall Street (December 25th)

After being delayed numerous times, this Oscar hopeful is finally coming out before the year ends.  The Wolf of Wall Street, starring Leonardo DiCaprio as the financial bad-boy Jordan Belfort, is the story of how Belfort committed a massive Wall Street fraud that nets his firm millions of dollars.  The film follows Belfort’s firm as it becomes the best financial firm on Wall Street.  The movie also stars Jonah Hill, who plays Donnie Azoff, Belfort’s partner in crime.