That’s a crazy intro man…mad news clips from NYC over the piano from that Billy Joel track. Superstar Jay on the hosting/co-sign as only he can do; one of the best DJs to do that shit too. Rated R is outta the Bronx, been doing it for a while. He’s def a cat that should be getting more mixtape love all around because he stays with a dope track.
I’m listening to “Work Hard” and the shit is all grind of a NYC MC. “See I ain’t get a deal yet / it’s been six long years for the kid every month late on my rent / I’m trying to network fucking with these DJs / I got hot songs, ni99as need to replay.” This is that classic mixtape music…an MC who truly wears their heart on their sleeve. He gives you no chance to NOT feel the music and relate to it. Plus the hook is filled with inspiration…”I don’t want to sell dope my whole life dog”…and “work hard play later that’s a rule playa”. Man I would have quoted the whole shit but I’m not typing it all out like that. The hardest track on the whole project is “E.S.R Till I Die”…crazy metaphors on this one. “I’m the needle, the bag, the raw going in your veins…” The shit really gets serious when “D.R.U.G.S” hits. I mean this is easily the best overall track on here. The real life aspect of the lyrics can’t be denied. If you can’t see the visuals when listening to this you might be on “D.R.U.G.S”. Rated R says rhyming is his medication (therapy for the brain)…you can tell by listening to this joint. We need to get a video for this one too. I can say same the save for both “Being Honest” and “Rest In Peace Momma”. You listen to those and then realize you ain’t been thru shit in life. Those three songs make the whole mixtape for me to be honest.
The most important thing about this mixtape is that when you’re done listening you know exactly who Rated R is and where he comes from. Most MCs never accomplish that with a mixtape and really, that’s what you want to do, it’s your calling card…your “first impression” most times and it’s important. Rated R knows who he is as an MC, that’s evident and he’s not about to do or say anything out of who he is. No cross over attempts, no generic “female” tracks, just him. Either you fuck with the music he makes or you don’t…that’s hip hop.