Review: Prodigy's "The Bumpy Johnson Album"

Review: Prodigy's "The Bumpy Johnson Album"

Prodigy’s new album is a solid effort, with that classic Mobb Deep sound, strong production and gritty lyrics.

It hasn't been too long since we've heard from the other Mobb Deep member, Prodigy, who just released an album in July, but he's back again with his second release post-prison. There has been a lot of talk about Prodigy lately, regarding the controversy surrounding his relationship with the other half of Mobb Deep, Havoc. This time around though Prodigy allows the music to do the talking as he addresses a few issues, and then some, on this album.

For years Prodigy has defied the test of time and continues to bring his certified New York style along with that real hip-hop sound. Gimmick raps have never been in Prodigy’s make up, and The Bumpy Johnson Album is no different. The album is comprised of the previously released The Ellsworth Bumpy Johnson EP, as well as six new songs.

The LP kicks off with “Change” where P is making a very strong statement to the rap world as he spits about how rappers have tried to duplicate his style, but to no avail. He gives us a strong hook, telling rappers that times have changed and to look within themselves and ask are they going be a leader, or follow what the rest of the rap game is doing.

The album continues with “The One and Only,” which is produced by the legendary producer, The Alchemist. This is one of the project’s stand-out cuts, as the chemistry between the two collaborators on this track is second to none. Prodigy continues to express disdain with rest of the hip-hop world on this one, and how there can only be one “infamous notorious.”

Prodigy & The Alchemist have proven once again on this album that are a very formidable duo. They go on to have two more joints together on this project, which are entitled “Medicine Man” and “For One Night Only.” The Alchemist’s smooth, but hard-hitting production seems tailor made for Prodigy’s classic laid-back flow. This has been apparent since Prodigy’s release from jail, whether it was P spitting on Curren$y’s “The Type” or Domo Genesis’s “Till The Angles Come,” that both happened to produced by The Alchemist.


One of the best concept songs on this project was a cut entitled “Recipe for Murder.” The up-tempo beat was prefect for Prodigy to let loose with some of the hardest lyrics on the album. He lets rappers know why they don’t want beef with him, but through different rhyme schemes, using kitchen utensils and cooking styles. The hook repeats the saying, “Recipe for Murder,” while being chopped up with different voices, which makes for classic hip-hop. He speaks directly to the these unfit rappers with lyrics like, “It’ll only take a teaspoon full of heart to squeeze on the burner/and a cup full of common sense to get a away with murder.”

The back end of The Bumpy Johnson Album is fit for a few deep, thought-provoking tracks such as “Twilight,” “Black Devil,” and “Stronger.” These records really speak to the heart as he touches on his portrayal of the hood, death, the devil and him being strong enough to withstand all of the trials and tribulations that have gone on in his life.

The Bumpy Johnson Album is a well-put together project with a smooth listen from start to finish. Production-wise Prodigy really proves he has a great ear for music choosing silky smooth beats that are cohesive with his relaxed, but tenacious rapping style. He really goes above and beyond to prove to his fans that he still has it on this project, and he didn’t disappoint. Fans looking for that classic Mobb Deep sound will be very satisfied with this album.

Cop the album on iTunes.

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