Thursday, July 24, 2008

Hell Rell: Black Mask Black Gloves (The Ruga Edition)

Dipset enforcer Hell Rell is back with his official sophomore fell length album, Black Mask, Black Gloves, and everybody who is a fan of Rell's unique gangsta spin on rap, he does not disappoint.

We were first introduced to an incarcerated Ruga Rell on 20o3's Diplomatic Immunity double album, which was really a very good album. 

But even with his limited participation on the album, Rell stood out with his memorable a capella freestyles, which included gems such as:

N*gga, what cho money like?
I keep dough, ijo.
Spice the track up like adobo,
It's a free throw.
My hit man's Benito.
He don't speak no English lingo
And he fresh off the plane from Puerto Rico.
Find a n*gga and kill him
Is the only thing that he know.
He'll ring your doorbell
And pop you right through the peephole.
As far as this ki go?
It's gonna get stepped on,
Cooked up, broke down.
Probably get distributed in yo town.
The block's got me grindin',
My watch keeping me bright.
N*gga, why I'mma knock ya hustle
If mine's treating me right?
Like his customers, he had me hooked right there.

Of course, on this new album the subject matter never strays too far from his bread and butter -- guns, money and drugs, none of which can exist without the other in Rell's world -- but musically this is the most solid effort from a Dipset member since perhaps Cam'ron's Purple Haze album released nearly four years ago.

The album starts on a high note with "Intro (Black Gloves)," where he lets listeners know what he's about and what's he's been doing in his spare time:

Got a hundred guns, hundred goons,
Plus two enemies, too.
Killed one in May, one in June,
My new album is coming soon!
And while I'm no beauty scout, it is obvious to the naked eye that Hell Rell is not the most attractive human on the face of the earth. But like Deion Sanders it must be the money (though he cautions that while he is very wealthy, "I never wrote a check"...) when he raps that he's "got b*tches lookin' for me like a shoe sale."

And although he goes out of his way to prove the unity of his crew, The Diplomats, the noticeably limited Dispet participation on this album is very telling -- and worrisome for the Dips' future as a whole. Only J.R Writer and some guy named Sen appear on the album with Rell

But Rell holds his own (does he have any other choice?), and reaffirms his allegiance to the Diplomats for any doubters on "True Colors," one banger of a song calling out fake gangsters while at the same time touting his own wealthy but homicidal status:

Yeah, n*gga, it's the Dips,
So don't get us confused.
Or you gon' make me mad,
And you gon' make the news.
And I'm gon' make my flight,
Or triple on a cruise
To an island where these b*tches is nude and serving food.
Ignorant, but isn't that why we love Hell Rell in the first place?

The album's lone misstep is "Push 'Em Back," which, weirdly enough, sounds almost exactly like Lil' Mama's reprehensible hip-pop song "Lip Gloss," and at times on the song borrows Yung Joc's flow from his hit "It's Going Down".

But after that the album wraps up with two very solid efforts in "Rumors," where Rell refutes all the Dipset gossip, and on "Million Dollar Man," which may just be the best on the album, where he says on the hook, "If it wasn't rap, it was crack kingpin, thank God I'm on my job with this ink pen."

Check out this video of Rell promoting his album, which officially came out on Tuesday.

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