Review: Joe Budden's "A Loose Quarter"

Review: Joe Budden's "A Loose Quarter"

A Loose Quarter is a quality project from top to bottom that shows growth with a combination of the same mood music that fans have grown accustomed to.

Joe Budden has been known to let it all hang out musically, and A Loose Quarter is no different. This is Joe’s first solo project that wasn’t named Mood Muzik since Halfway House. There has been a lot of talk about the self proclaimed King of New Jersey surrounding his relationship with his new girlfriend, Kaylin Garcia, and his addition to the upcoming season of "Love and Hip-Hop". This may have caused fans to forget that he can rap, very well as a matter of fact. It seems to be evident that Joe felt the same way as he rapped with a chip on his shoulder for a good duration of the project.

Joe Budden's music isn’t for the non-thinkers as he gives his view on life from a whole different perspective; one that is more mature and a lot wiser than a lot of his peers. Track 3 entitled “Through My Eyes” is a perfect example of that. On this, cut fellow New Jersey native, Tsu Surf, and Mouse spit about their views of how they live their lives over an eerie, but hard-hitting AraabMuzik instrumental. This is definitely one of the standout joints of the tape as Surf and Joey are speaking to each other from a brother-to-brother perspective, which is reminiscent of Young Chris and Neef of the Young Gunz. “All In My Head” is another instance where Joe displays his wisdom and maturity as he self reflects on his problems within while speaking on his weaknesses and thoughts on life. Along with help from fellow Slaughterhouse member, Royce Da 5’9, and Kobe, "Jumpoff" was able to catch the listeners through confronting his own inner demons over some smooth Cardiak production. 

As mentioned previously Joe lets it all hang out in the booth. A perfect way to describe it would be to use his own lyrics from the Mood Muzik 3 track entitled “Hiatus” where he stated, “...music is just what feelings sound like.” Fans looking for those emotional, and heartfelt type of records that Joe has been known for should look no further than “Off 2 The Races.” On this track, he sheds some light on the situation between him and a certain ex from the past. Mouse holds nothing back as you can hear the pain in his voice, but while also making some points that are sure to hit home for some listeners. An additional joint that exemplifies Joe’s brilliance would be “More of Me,” which is a follow up to one of his most touching songs ever, “All Of Me.” With Emanny lending his vocals throughout the track, Joe vividly puts words together expressing his reflections about how far he’s come in life while painting a picture to the story behind his new love interest. Lyrics like “While I’m just amazed that a women so beautiful could go through such ugliness and not become it” are sure to depict a deep image for fans. Songs such as “Pain Won’t Stop” and “Momma Said” are sure to touch listener’s souls as he discusses his family situation as well.

Mouse didn’t forget the pure hip hop fans either, as he’s sure to amaze fans with his flow and bars on the second track of the mixtape entitled, “Words Of A Chameleon.” While rapping in an aggressive tone, the self-proclaimed King of Jersey puts the AraabMuzik instrumental in a choke hold with a vicious flow and hard-hitting punch lines.

The best feature of the tape would have to be awarded to TDE’s own, Ab-Soul. On “Cut From A Different Cloth,” Ab and Mouse trade bars giving fans a look at two of the most talented MC’s in the game right now. The chemistry on this track is unmatched, as it seemed they have been working together their whole careers.

Overall, once fans and critics really digest the material on this project, it will easily been seen as one of the best mixtapes this year. From features to production to bars, this tape is quite possibly top 5 mixtape of the year material. Joe even has one of the funniest skits of 2012 with “The Helmet” interlude. This tape really displays Joe’s skills while proving to old fans that he still has it and then some, and to new fans that he isn’t a one-hit wonder.

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