The New Classics

January 15, 2009

Mixtape Review / Download: CurT@!n$, The Great Adventures of Dope Boy C: WHSL- Rebel Radio (Mixtape)


I’ve never been a big fan of rappers borrowing other people’s beats, either for mixtapes or albums. I always find it better when the artist has his own voice, and isn’t doing what has already been done. Five of the 13 songs on The Great Adventures are instantly recognizable rehashes of past popular songs (‘Get Busy by The Roots, ‘Breathe’ by The Prodigy, ‘I Get Money’ by 50 Cent, ‘Deep Cover’ by Dr. Dre, and ‘Where I’m From’ by Jay-Z). I understand that this is a free mixtape, and maybe these happen to be beats that CurT@!n$ has always wanted to rhyme over. But from a listener’s perspective, these are just bumps on the road to hearing fresh material. As an artist, why would you want to even try to attempt recreating a classic when you are not going to even come close to being as good as the original?

The man with the ridiculously hard-to-type name shows some promise, though. His rapping isn’t anything too out of the box, but it isn’t offensive either. The most potential is shown on ‘Night of the Living Dope’, where he rapidly rhymes over a seriously heavy beat that sounds like Timbaland on steroids (uhhh…). ‘You Thought E.T. Was Something?’ is another song that stands out to me with a certain freshness, thanks to it’s spacey beat. But even when CurT@!n$ is at his best, he still seems to be following a formula. “More [blank] than [blank]” or “Got [blank] like [blank]” seem to be his two favorite mad libs, just interchanging adjectives and nouns and throwing in random references. I mean, he references Carlton Banks more than three times on this mixtape, and two of those times are the same exact lyric: “Got bank like Carlton“. He’s gotta show more creativity than this to be considered a major player in the future.

Although CurT@!n$ shows a lot of heart here, the substance is lacking. I’m not expecting a Biggie-level narrative, or Mos Def-type imagery, but he’s doing a lot of talking without saying anything. And you can’t come out talking tough without proving yourself first, yet that seems to be the only thing he does do. He has a good flow, though, and I can’t argue that he doesn’t put all of himself into the music behind the mic. When (or if) he finally finds his own voice, he could be a problem for other rappers. But as of now, CurT@!n$ has a long way to go to get any type of recognition in a sea of average rappers just like him.

CurT@!n$, Great Adventures of Dope Boy

Album: The Great Adventures of Dope Boy C: WHSL- Rebel Radio (mixtape)
Artist: CurT@!n$
Label: High Society Life Inc.
Featured Artists: Kurupt, Mickey Factz, Smoke Dza
Highlights: ‘Night of the Living Dope’, ‘The Rebel’, ‘The Legend of Bagger Dope’, ‘You Thought E.T. Was Something?’
Rating: 5.5

Bonus Sample
CurT@!n$, Night of the Living Dope:


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