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Mixtape Review: The Real is Back 2 - [Young] Jeezy

Posted by Lindsay Carolla on 09/22 at 03:19 PM

Grade: A

[Young] Jeezy has done it again with his latest mixtape, The Real is Back 2.
Last year the celebrated rapper hailing from Atlanta, Young Jeezy, decided to drop the “young” portion of his stage name to establish that he’s a veteran of the game. Though the full name still seems to stick with fans, it is clear through mixtapes like The Real is Back 2 that Jeezy’s sound has matured and he deserves to be considered one of the best.

The Real is Back 2 dropped unexpectedly on September 3, 2011 as a follow-up to The Real is Back mixtape released earlier this year. Both mixtapes were hosted by DJ Drama and feature various hip-hop artists, from rookies to royalty. The Real is Back 2 promotes rap neophyte Freddie Gibbs, recently signed to Jeezy’s own label CTE and a member of XXL‘s 2010 Freshmen Class. Gibbs appears on a whopping four songs. Birdman - Young Money foreman and adoptive father of Lil Wayne -  can be heard on “Trump,” the second of a total of eleven tracks. 

The collaborations alone make it difficult to call The Real is Back 2 a “mixtape” with a straight face. Furthermore, each song is so well produced and carefully crafted that anyone could believe this “mixtape” to be a full-fledged album, with or without the included artists. The Real is Back 2 offers gritty beats behind raw lyrics all with polished precision to make the streets proud. The theme focuses around Jeezy’s defense of his thug reputation with a flow so tight that it’s impossible to imagine him still slinging drugs to make ends meet. Though his style is unique, his persona and attitudes are highly reminiscent of the late and great, Notorious B.I.G. Take for instance, “The Real is Back 2 (Intro),” which despite its boring title starts, “I was a boy in the hood before I ever knew Puffy, I been a made man, dare you motherf*****s to touch me. Guess I was too legit, like Hammer, they can’t touch me, made a livin’ off Arm & Hammer, guess I was lucky.” Sound familiar?

Lyrics of this nature carry throughout the mixtape. They force you to realize how accurately titled the mixtape really is. While most rappers nowadays rely on clever wordplay wrought with satiric simile and metaphor, Jeezy’s rhymes are truly authetic and relatable. His basic but bona fide style certainly secures him as “the last of his kind” as he suggests on “All the Time,” an easy melodic joint filled with angst featuring Slick Pulla. After all Jeezy (aka Mr. 17.5) got his start narrating his admittedly disreputable past through song. The Real is Back 2 promotes an artist true to his roots, still speaking for the streets, creating a perfect jumping off point for his comeback album, Thug Motivation 103: Hustlerz Ambition, which is hopefully dropping soon.

The Real is Back 2 significantly softens the blow of an ambiguous drop date for the full length album. Actually, the introduction to “Sittin’ Low (featuring Freddie Gibbs)” reassures us that “TM:103 is on the way,” and with tracks like these, we can manage to wait. It’s honestly as if these mixtape songs fell off the back of the album truck. The Real is Back 2 is chock-full of heavy bass bangers that feature Dirty South snare drum rolls indicative of a rapper repping the ATL. “Bandana” and “Gotta See This (featuring Freddie Gibbs)” allow Jeezy to represent the streets accurately while displaying his finely tuned skill over everything from got shots to a chopped and screwed violin. “Nicks 2 Bricks” features Freddie Gibbs and Jeezy over blazing trumpet notes that rightfully showcases how harmoniously the couple collaborates. Freddie Gibbs employs quick, hurried verse juxtaposed to Jeezy’s renowned raspy and methodical technique. “Chickens No Flour,” a rare solo track that uses the southern drum roll production heavily, finds Jeezy retaliating on those that doubt his allegiance to the game: “I got my mind made I wanna be a millionaire… I got something for you haters, and it’s in my glock.” The final song, “The Real N**** Anthem,” is exactly as its name implies. It allows this triumph to end with a bang and leaves us waiting anxiously for Jeezy’s next installment be it The Real is Back 3 or more optimistically, Thug Motivation 103: Hustlerz Ambition.

The Real is Back 2
announced on the back of the tape September 20, 2011 as the drop date for Jeezy’s Thug Motivation 103: Hustlerz Ambition.  Unfortunately, days after fans rejoiced at the mixtape’s release, Thug Motivation 103: Hustlerz Ambition was yet again delayed indefinitely. Widespread anger quickly ensued, which resulted in an uproar via Twitter from colleagues and fans alike. Jeezy responded with a picture of a hand-written track-list, confirming that there are songs to be heard somewhere in record label limbo. According to HipHopDX.com, Jeezy claims December 20, 2011 as the next alleged drop date. Here’s hoping the album sees stores before the new year.

{name} Author: Lindsay Carolla
Bio: Lindsay Carolla is a senior studying English, and Italian language and literature at the Pennsylvania State University. She is an on-air personality for the Lion 90.7fm on the Jam 91 Show. She finds pleasure in traveling, attending concerts, and literary symbolism. Lindsay has an eclectic taste in music which ranges from her favorite rap artist, Notorious B.I.G., to her favorite indie darling, Modest Mouse. But what she enjoys most is when two unlikely musical genres successfully combine to create a new aesthetic, such as can be found in the band Brokencyde.

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