I Can't Call It: Trust The Shooter - Royce Da 5'9"

Posted On Sunday, April 17, 2016

Not too many times in life do dreams actually come true. And I'm not talking about those I wanna be a doctor so I'm gonna work hard and go to medial school dreams or I'm gonna make it out the hood so I'm gonna study really hard and get a full scholarship to college dreams. Nah...I'm talking about the dreams that we have no control over. And not to mention the dreams I'm talking about really aren't that deep. I'm talking about the I wish Hulk Hogan would have wrestled Ric Flair back in '87 when they were both in their prime dreams or I wish Nas and Primo would've dropped that album back in '98 dreams. Those are the dreams that to me seldomly ever come true. But back in '14 one of "those" dreams came true when I saw the video for PRhyme's "U Looz." See, ever since I heard the magic that Primo & Royce cook up together from "Boom" & "Hip Hop" to "Second Place" & "Shake This" I've been hoping, wishing and praying that one day Prim would lace Royce for an entire album cause if there's ever been a knock on Royce's career in my eyes it's money's beats. But I knew if Primo was behind the boards...Royce might just finally get that 5 mic classic I knew dude had in him. And even though I know a lot of folk weren't feeling the PRhyme album like that it was a strong 4.5 banger in my eyes that STILL gets burn in the whip damn near 2 years after it dropped. And not for nuthin' but since I felt like Royce blacked out on that album, one my most anticipated albums of '16 was Royce's 6th solo album "Layers." But before Royce lets "Layer" go, he decided to lace us with a nice 'lil appetizer first called "Trust The Shooter." And if you know anything about me and my philosophies on how artist's mixtape are 9 times outta 10 better then their albums then this "Trust the Shooter" jawn should be kinda crazy right?

"Trust The Shooter" sets off with the Primo produced "Black History" and has Royce schooling us to his humble beginnings "soon as I was born I knew I was due to do some damage, came out the womb doctors passed me around the room and panicked/four pounds, dark purple couldn't even breathe on my own, shakin' baby in an incubator, breathing machine for my lungs/doctor told my mom and pops they gonna have to keep me for a couple months, papa regretting doing coke, mama probably those couple blunts" and when the beat flips, Royce breaks down the history of GangStarr, "1966, March 21st, in July 17th, '61 marks the birth, the birth of two phenoms/I'm talking about Chris Edward Martin and Keith Edward Elam, this is for the real Gang Starr fans, not the ones who call us PRhyme." "Savages" & "Dead President Heads" both have Royce in what I like to call a "men at work zone" (if you don't know why I call it that google Kool G. Rap & do the knowledge) where he blacks out for 10+ minutes on both cuts with waaaaaaaaay too many quotables to mention...but here's a couple for the hell of it. "The white girl got you bugging out like Liza Minnelli, my car's on fire, the tires Pirelli/I'm Martin and Eddie, searching for Taral Hicks, not to give her a baby but to put a life in her belly/I'm barbaric with the nine and all/am I in everybody's top 5? Not at all/you could find a nigga name in the ladies room, on a lot of walls topic of vagina monologues" is from "Savages" and there's a nice lil shot a Jersey's Outsidaz crew on "Dead Presidents Head" with "I ain't a fan of his, he might want to be standin' clear, I come with the cannon not the cameras, I ain't Shannon Briggs but let's go champ, let's slow dance/kill you with the first and give you seven more neck romance/best flow versus yo petrol rants, you gassin/this that new black Bent, blue Aston, this that who dat against who askin who ya again/'99 the Outsidaz told me I wouldn't last, I'm too arrogant/but here I am two boys two girls two era's in/and they over there on pills and heroin, forks in they careers so that's real embarrassing."

Royce let's Kid Akshun shine dolo on the Mr. Porter produced "Mind Right" which is dope while the Nottz produced "Which Is Cool" is BONKERS and has Royce breaking down the differences between him & a lot of these new school rappers, "If you don't write your own rhymes get offended this is to you and you/listen fool no more bars for you, you can't raise the bar you ain't in the building, matter of fact you can't even lift a stool, fool/that liquor disappear from my system like skippin' school/me and these niggaz live by the same don'ts but different do's." The ArabMuizk produced "The Banjo" is a dope posse cut featuring Westside Gunn, Conway and Styles P and in case you ever wondered what happened to that corny jamiacan dude who used to do all of that yelling on the choruses back in the late 90's & early 2000's, he shows up on "Rap On Steroids" and usually dude would be enough to ruin a track for me but even dude's corniness can't ruin a Royce and Black Thought colabo. "Universe Interlude" lets you be a fly on the wall while Royce speaks on his childhood & his beginning in the rap game while "Tabernacle" keeps the open book on Royce's life going with him breaking down how his son was born, his grandmother died and how he met Em...all on the same day. The title cut "Trust The Shooter" featuring Smoke DZA is dope and the mixtape ends with the Mr. Porter produced BANGER "Digest It" featuring a new dope female MC Tiara who kills it but my fave banger on "Trust..." is the Jake One produced "Wait." "I'm here for that green for that mula you scheme/I see right through ya I'm regal like a King Father King as Zamunda/one thing's for sure I think they do know/that me and Porter and Jake Uno We don't play no games no we play sumo/we attempt to flatten into action, with all these average, flacid defenseless rappers I have no problem killing like sent assassins." And with this kind of banger on tap just has me wanting way more Jake One produced Royce bangers on tap. But when everything's said and done, only time will tell if my philosophy is on point about mixtapes being better then the albums and if "Trust the Shooter" ends up being doper then "Layers" but I'll tell you this, after living with "Trust The Shooter" for a minute and seeing the zone that Royce is in right now, this is one of the few times in the game that I hope I'm absolutely wrong.

4 outta 5 mics

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