(Photo: Warner Bros. Records)
With eight studio albums under his belt since 2009, it’s clear that Curren$y’s love of marijuana hasn’t slowed his work ethic. New Orleans’ prolific pothead has already made three solo releases in 2012 thus far with the group project Jet World Order 2, due November 20. After dropping the independent album, The Muscle Car Chronicles, in February, Spitta put out The Stoned Immaculate, his major label debut, in June before linking with red-hot producer Harry Fraud for Cigarette Boats in July. On Halloween, the laid-back lyrical workhorse gave fans another treat with Priest Andretti, his first official mixtape in years and evidence that he is not satisfied with his already fruitful 2012.
As expected, most of Priest Andretti finds Spitta calmly letting off rapid-fire flows in his trademark Southern drawl. The tape delivers the unorthodox rhyme schemes, soulful samples and monster baselines that die-hard fans have come to expect from the industry veteran. But while his fans will always be satisfied by the endless weed wordplay and obscure pop culture references he tucks into his bars, those who don’t share his love of bud, classic movies and automobiles may struggle to keep interest in his lyrics. That said, even the most casual observer can’t ignore the hypnotic affect that Curren$y’s droopy voice can have when mixed with the right beat. The fluttering flute that highlights “Motion” inspires a vintage flow and intricate rhyme scheme that shows Spitta at his best. “Watch the Godfather, Gangsta pictures in motion,” he says. “Michael Corleonne, presidential Rolly on/Closet full of Jordan IV’s, Penny 1’s.”
With appearances from Noreaga, Styles P and Young Roddy, Priest Andretti is far from the star-studded, big-budget production Spitta gave fans on The Stoned Immaculate. But the return to his roots may keep the MC grounded as his star continues to rise. Overall, Priest neither disappoints, nor impresses. The Thelonious Martin-produced "Talk My S---" stands out from the crowd, featuring nostalgically gangsta chords and some of Curren$y’s greenest bars. "Grand steering wheel in my hand," he begins, "Mama next to me, rubber-banding up them grands/Fittin’ to hit the car lot, cop two champagne sedans." Fluency in Spitta’s heavily coded language isn’t key to enjoying the tape; neither is recognizing the film clips that introduce most of the tape’s 14 songs. But while die-hard fans will hail the return of their high priest, the uninitiated may be better off checking out the more accessible The Stoned Immaculate to ease into Spitta’s lane.
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