October 11, 2017

Cam'ron - Purple Haze (2004)

Country: U.S.A.
Genre: Hip-Hop
Style: Gangsta Rap
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© 2004 Roc-A-Fella Records
AllMusic Review by Andy Kellman
Released within months of Jim Jones' On My Way to Church, the second volume of the Diplomats' Diplomatic Immunity, and another flurry of mixtapes, Cam'ron's fourth album ("Previously written in 2001," as announced in the intro) is evenly divided between strong and weak tracks. This lack of quality control will both provide ammo for Diplomat haters and frustrate Diplomat supporters, even if there's a durable 45-minute album in here somewhere. The backing track of "Girls," a feather-light translation of Cyndi Lauper's "Just Wanna Have Fun," belongs on a teen pop record -- it's such a folly that it makes you wonder if somebody dared Cam'ron to release it. "Harlem Streets" fares only a little better, with the theme from "Hill Street Blues" used to distracting and detracting effect -- perhaps the cues should've taken from Kool G Rap & DJ Polo's "Ill Street Blues" instead. On the other side, a pair of soul-steeped productions from Kanye West ("Down and Out," built on William Bell's "Strung Out") and the West-inspired Pop & Versatile ("Soap Opera," using Smokey Robinson's "Merry-Go-Round") help prop the album back up, and Heatmakerz's rallying "More Gangsta Music" features some of Juelz Santana's infectious youthful energy. Though it has been two years since Cam'ron's last solo album, there's so much Diplomat-affiliated material stuffing the racks that even the most devoted followers must be on the verge of overdosing on the crew's bewildering, nonsensical rhymes. "Cause I feed you well/Every sneaker, hell/You eat Louis, sh*t Gucci, breathe Chanel/Karl Lagerfeld, acting like Gargamel" wins the prize on this release. Inconsistencies and gratuitous running time be damned, a lot of rap fans will be happy just to have another Cam'ron album to devour. Fellow Diplomats JR Writer, Jim Jones, and Freeky Zekey make appearances, along with Twista and Jaheim.

tags: camron, purple haze, cam'ron, 2004, flac,

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