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J Dubb – “Transformer”
Released: 2011
Reviewed by: Ed Welch
Rating: 5.4 (Out of 10)
[xrr rating=5.4/10]

This is my first time hearing any music from J Dubb, and I have to be honest, I really wasn’t that impressed.  Please believe me when I say I’ve heard worse.  This album isn’t that bad, but it’s not that good either.  With all of that being said, I wouldn’t throw the towel in on J Dubb just yet.  Here’s why…

The production in general was subpar.  A lot of the tracks sounded dated because of the sounds that were selected.  I will say this; “good” production is just a collection of good ideas put together.  I liked the ideas and direction of where some of the beats were going, they just didn’t get there fully.  Beats like “Glorify His Name” just sounded like a live version of “How Do You Want It” by Tupac feat. KC & Jojo.  …Excuse me, a corny and older version of “How Do You Want It”.  Not old enough for you?  Well, how ‘bout sampling The Isley Brothers’ “For the Love of You” for the beat under “Agape Love”.  This probably would’ve been a pretty good idea if the rest of the production didn’t come across as dated.  This song is actually pretty nice.  The beats just don’t stand out or they stand out for the wrong reason for the most part.  On the contrary, I really enjoyed the beat and the sample for the hook of “One Little Dream”.  In one word, it’s …off-the-chain.  Leave me alone, I couldn’t think of one word I wanted to use (shrug).  I enjoyed the hook even though I couldn’t understand all of the words, but attribute that to my lack of understanding for slowed down or sped up lyrics.  Trust me.  You’ll nod your head on this one. This is definitely my favorite song on the album.  I’m going back through the album as I type this.  I’m telling you, the tracks have great ideas, but bad sound selection.  There is definite potential here.  “Can’t Back Down” bucks the trend and sounds like it was produced this year.  It reminds me of something off of Tedashii’s newest album, I just haven’t tried to put my finger on it specifically.  “Not Going Back” is also nice.

So why shouldn’t you throw in the towel yet?  There is actually some good songwriting on this project.  For all the beats that don’t stand out, there are actually some pretty good hooks and good singing as well.  “Tattoos and Candy Paint” has a definite old school, West Coast feel to it.  It’s old, but fairly catchy.  “Who I Am” is actually one of my favorite songs.  The beat keeps things steady and the chorus gets you ready for another verse.  Solid.  In fact, most of the songs are solid.  Good ideas…  I like the melodies and how the songs flow for the most part.  One negative is some of the slow songs drag a little bit.  It probably would’ve helped if some songs were sped up just a tad.  I also noticed that J Dubb had a problem reciting some of his lyrics on beat.  It’s a minor issue. Nothing is blatantly off or distracting, but I think it’s more because the songs are a tad bit too slow.  His flow sounded like he was waiting for the kick/snare to come back so he could say his next word or line.  Almost like he wrote to another beat and made it go to a slower beat.  No, I haven’t mentioned J Dubb’s lyrical ability, because he’s pretty much like a drummer that stays in the pocket.  He didn’t do anything flashy, but he didn’t mess up anything either.  His lyrics flowed with the beat to create a solid song.

With all of that being said, this album has its share of highs and lows and I’m not talking about the treble and bass.  All-in-all, I’m glad I was able to experience J Dubb do his thing.  But hey, everybody is a critic.  I’m just the guy who wrote the review.  Peace and much love.

Comprehensive Rating:

Music                           4
Flow                            7
Lyricism                       5
Content                        7
Creativity                      3
Credibility                     5
Personality                    5
Presentation                  7
Overall Production        6
Potential Impact            5

President/CEO of The Corelink Solution and Holy Culture

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