Hurricane Chris

51/50 Ratchet

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    6
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51/50 Ratchet, the major-label debut of young Shreveport, LA, rapper Hurricane Chris, features his breakthrough single, "A Bay Bay," and a bunch of songs that are very similar in style. No other song here can match the chant-along catchiness of "A Bay Bay," though "The Hand Clap" comes fairly close. Both songs are produced by Phunk Dawg, who knowingly sticks to the same winning formula that resulted in innumerable Southern rap hits in 2007 (e.g., Soulja Boy's chart-topping "Crank That"). The one song on 51/50 Ratchet that breaks from the snap-rap mold is "Playas Rock," a Mr. Collipark production built atop a sample of Earth, Wind & Fire's "Love's Holiday." Like the formulaic productions, Hurricane Chris delivers the same style of raps over and over. He's gifted for his age, especially in terms of delivery, but his immaturity is well evident in his raps, which lack substance and are cliché at best. The potential is there for Chris to grow into an impressive rapper; at this point, however, the teenage rapper's skills are rudimentary. The album-ending, seven-minute remix of "A Bay Bay" is an ample showcase of this, as big-league rappers like the Game, E-40, and Jadakiss step up to the plate and sound mighty impressive relative to the preceding hour of rapping.

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