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S.O. – “So it Begins”
Released: 2011
Reviewed by: Ed Welch
Rating: 7.3 (Out of 10)
[xrr rating=7.3/10]

So it begins!!!  S.O. has dropped on the scene with a SOlid project for your listening pleasure and spiritual edification.  I enjoyed this project.  The production is pretty diverse.  The content is good and the wordplay is present and accounted for.

This project doesn’t start with a fast exciting banger or some intriguing interlude or intro.  S.O. takes the opposite approach and decides to let a slow, smooth song lead the way.  Yeah, S.O. let’s his wordplay do the heavy lifting here with only slight pauses that cause you to expect a hook that never comes.  That’s a pretty bold move, but S.O.’s rhyming ability is clearly past “SO-SO”.  After he sets the tone with wordplay, S.O. totally blind-sided me with “Lows and Highs”.  I have to admit that I’m bias on this one.  He grabbed music from the “Inception” movie score, which is one of my favorite movies now-a-days.  (Side note: A movie can’t be considered a favorite of mine if I don’t love the movie score.) That’s totally unfair!  S.O. could’ve rapped “blah, blah, blah, bliggety blah!” and I would’ve been nodding my head to this track.  🙂 With that being said, the message of the song is real and fits the beat well.  The hook is “ok”, but it wasn’t as catchy, lyrically as I would’ve liked it to be.  The actual singing is good, plus, I really enjoyed the break down that followed though.

After the next couple songs I started to get scared.  Not because the songs were bad, but because everything has been pretty slow so far.  Lyricists always seem to stick with slow songs instead of fast ones, because it gives them time to play with more words.  Unfortunately, if unchecked, this can cause an album to lack that multi-dimensional appeal. No, this album isn’t totally slow, but there are only a few up-beat tracks.  The beats are primarily slow to moderate beats throughout.  The good news is you may not notice (I guess I ruined that, huh?).

I have a love/hate relationship with “All Honor, All Glory”.  I’ll give the bad news first.  I am absolutely tired of all of these Rick Ross – BMF sound-alike songs.  Part of it is the producer’s (Lex Luger) fault.  All of his beats sound alike.  For evidence sake, we have Jay-Z & Kanye’s collab for “H.A.M.” Most recently, we have Ace Hood’s “big” single, “Hustle Hard”.  Lecrae even jumped on the bandwagon with “Overdose” (yeah, I was tired of it then too).  In short, I’m sick of it.  S.O. even switched to a lyrical style that was extremely similar to what Ace Hood does in his remake of Lex Luger’s greatest hit.  But to be fair, this is my personal hang up.  That’s what’s hot right now.  I get it.  Smh.  What’s the good news (with my personal steez aside)?  I was totally impressed with S.O. showing the versatility of rocking that type of beat.  S.O. brought it, lyrically, on this song just like he does on the rest.  Way to hold it down, bro!  Lol…I told you it was a love/hate relationship.  *Shrug*

I know I only mentioned a few of the songs.  I just mentioned the songs that provoked the biggest emotional response (which is what music is all about).  The rest of the album is actually tight.  I can actually listen to this entire album from start to finish and not want to skip anything.  And that’s a huge compliment when you consider how many times I’ve listened to it.  But hey, everybody is a critic.  I’m just the guy who wrote the review.  Peace and much love.

Comprehensive Ratings:

Music                           7
Flow                            8
Lyricism                       8
Content                        7
Creativity                      7
Credibility                     7
Personality                    6
Presentation                  8
Overall Production        8
Potential Impact            7

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