AZ

Aziatic

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    9
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AllMusic Review by

Since teaming up with Nas on Illmatic, widely considered to be one of the greatest albums in hip-hop, AZ has been looked upon to do amazing things with his music. Has he lived up to those high expectations? On this album he has. From start to finish, the beats on this album are complex, inventive, and almost perfectly suited for AZ's style of rhyming. He's carefully crafted this album rather than slapped it together overnight to meet his quota, and it shows. It helps immensely that he's brought along people like DR Period, Az Izz, Nas, and Buckwild, but they don't outshine the younger AZ and he holds his own well. One problem that AZ has always had is that he lives in the shadow of his work in the mid -'90s. There's a new era of hip-hop fans who may not know him as well as the rest, but he's done well to reach out and offer the new generation something as well. There aren't just the thuggish tracks, but also some tracks suitable for the club and the ladies, such as "Take It Off." Lyrically, musically, and historically, AZ has come up with his best work in a long time on this album. The biggest complaint is the length of the LP, with only three songs going over four minutes. Why he would make such a great album and end it short is beyond comprehension.

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