Twista

Adrenaline Rush 2007

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    7
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With a title that references his breakthrough 1997 album Adrenaline Rush, Twista's 2007 effort is ambitious from the get-go and recalls a time when he represented hardcore hip-hop more than the chart-topping possibilities of guest-starring on R&B-flavored cuts. Twista's fast delivery and sharp verses make him one of the greatest guest rappers in the game, but his iffy relationship with the full-length remains intact, since Adrenaline Rush 2007 is about five cuts too long and shamelessly panders to radio with some uninspired, over-polished moments. "Give It Up" with Pharrell sounds like a track the producer designed for Gwen Stefani, while the too-smooth "Love Rehab" with R. Kelly is only interesting when Twista thanks his beloved for concealing a weapon from the police. While it's moments like these that make the album's title feel like an afterthought, "Say Say" with Cee-Lo and Jazze Pha is filled with infectious hip-hop nostalgia and old-school spirit. "Seven Day Hustle" and "The Come Up" are dedications to hip-hop in motion, while the grimey and satisfying "Trouble" could have fallen off the original Adrenaline Rush. Thanks to an infectious hook and prime sparring between Lil Wayne and Twista, "Whip Game Proper" is a crowd-pleaser that doesn't pander. Little else will have appeal past the hardcore fan base, but they've always been better than most at ignoring the man's shortcomings (limited subject matter, only one style of delivery) and focusing on his strengths (amazing speed and a punch-in-the-gut kind of wit).

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