Ghost Energy : Orange Cream

Ghost Energy : Orange Cream

This Ghost is based on those Orange Cream bars you probably enjoyed as a kid. It also tastes like one. It’s not as good though because it’s hard, probably impossible, to match the texture of ice cream; the best part; in an Energy drink. The can claims “no artificial flavors”, suspiciously enough, yet it’s listed on the ingredients list.

my rating : 3 of 5

audio review : Platinum OG 2 ( album ) … Spice 1

audio review : Platinum OG 2 ( album ) ... Spice 1

I don’t know what made Spice 1 think his Platinum OG album warranted a sequel, but the title is the least of its oddities. More baffling is the decision to put a random photo of 2Pac on the cover and invite a slew of guest rappers; every song has at least one; when the concept is about his own legacy.

That last bit is the worst thing about this project as Sway Calloway interrupts the playlist with a total of five Talks. He commemorates Spice 1 as if attending his funeral, but the interludes are out of place and only serve to annoy. The best songs include Come Out With Me, Not Easy and Real G’s.

my rating : 3 of 5

2024

a DM Records compilation : Bass Overload

a DM Records compilation : Bass Overload

This compilation, a DM Records album sampler of sorts, starts with two good songs. Bass 305’s Return, with its pretty pianos and Indian chants, brings about a sense of grace and placidity. Underground Bass Masters follow with a groove that sounds even better; the title cut from their newest album.

There are actually three UBM songs here and they’re all good. The set is mostly lackluster otherwise. I like Subsonic Love, but Operating System is nonfunctional and What Is A DJ should be removed from the playlist. Bass Alliance is missing in action, but their album title makes an odd appearance.

my rating : 3 of 5

1999

audio review : We Don’t Trust You ( album ) … Future + Metro Boomin

audio review : We Don't Trust You ( album ) ... Future + Metro Boomin

Metro’s track record suggests you can Trust him to provide a Boomin beat. This album, which would’ve been better suited as a mixtape, is no exception. His music, though too many of the drums and trap ticks sound alike, are the best part. Whether Future’s semi-retarded vocals help or hurt matters is the question for any given song, though it’s guest rapper Kendrick Lamar who’s most annoying.

my rating : 3 of 5

2024

Chiki Tropical Water : Strawberry And Lemon

Chiki Tropical Water : Strawberry And Lemon

As impressive as the ingredients list may be; it includes flowers and the word “organic” appears ten times; plain water is healthier. Is it tastier? I guess that depends. Strawberry is one of the best fruits in that regards, but Lemon leaves a lot to be desired. Not that the flavor is akin to either. This tastes like sweet tea to me.

my rating : 3 of 5

Reign Inferno : Watermelon Warlord

Reign Inferno : Watermelon Warlord

They should’ve called this one Strawberry Bubblegum. That’s what the flavor, which tastes artificial though the can, while admitting there’s “0% juice”, insists it isn’t, brings to mind. I can’t detect any Watermelon. Perhaps the Warlord is having an identity crisis. There is, however, a whopping 300 milligrams of “natural” caffeine.

my rating : 3 of 5

Rice Krispies Marshmallow Candy Bar

Rice Krispies Marshmallow Candy Bar

This smells and tastes like Rice Krispies Treats. Why it’s not marketed as such is the question. What’s missing is the gooey texture. Biting into it is more like eating a Krackel or Crunch bar except that it’s Marshmallow flavored instead of chocolate, which makes it better. The sweetness is a bit much though.

my rating : 3 of 5

Rip It [ Sugar Free ] : Citrus X

Rip It [ Sugar Free ] : Citrus X

They should’ve just called this Orange. It’s no mystery. That’s the Citrus fruit it tastes like the most. The “energy fuel”, its promo suggests, “Pairs well with breakfast, pizza, and setting up camp in a cave of grizzlies after hiking for 24 hours.” I prefer it at home, not with but after a meal, when I’d rather work on something thru the night instead of going to sleep.

my rating : 3 of 5

audio review : Cowboy Carter ( album ) … Beyoncé

audio review : Cowboy Carter ( album ) ... Beyoncé

The title makes no sense. It should be Cowgirl Carter. Not that there’s a sense of authenticity to Beyoncé’s ghetto ass riding off to the country. This is, to be clear, essentially a country music album with song titles like Riverdance, Levi’s Jeans, Sweet Honey Buckiin and Spaghettii. Those tacky “ii” bits representative the fact that it’s also the Act 2 follow-up to Renaissance.

That album sounds better if only because, when all else fails, you’ll get lost in its grooves. The beats here are mostly par for the course of a genre that relies more on vocal melodies, which Beyoncé has little talent for. The dive bar is packed when she sings her songs; her popularity assures it; but you’ll be hard pressed to find a catchy hook to hang your hat on.

I do like her Daughter; not that annoying chicklet on Protector but the song called Daughter. I like it a lot. The ballad, which dabbles in themes of patriarchy and Christianity, is surprisingly splendid. It’s a little bit country but mostly Celtic. Hopefully it will be played at the genre reveal party for Act 3 and she swaps those dadgum Cowboy clothes for (just) a torc.

my rating : 3 of 5

2024

audio review : The Contract [ Grand Theft Auto ] ( EP ) … Dr Dre

audio review : The Contract ( EP ) ... Dr Dre

“I see the way the game played,” Dr Dre declares at one point. If that’s a subliminal reference to the concept of this EP; a soundtrack for Grand Theft Auto; his penmen are more clever than they seem. This is, on paper, a random set of new Dre songs; a rarity these days, like the renowned producer making a beat on his own.

These six songs are co-produced; if not, as I suspect, solely produced; by different people. That, along with the fact that Dre, like dinnermate Puffy, is known to Contract ghostwriters, makes this EP his in the loosest sense. That it sounds more like Compton than another dose of the Chronic is more or less a sign of the times.

my rating : 3 of 5

2022

Rip It [ Sugar Free ] : Tribute

Rip It [ Sugar Free ] : Tribute

The flavor here is a blend of “active” mandarin (orange) and “live wild” lime; one of the best fruits and one of the worst. An energy drink based on just the former could be a welcomed addition to the Rip It collection, though the taste would nonetheless be dampered by the overwhelming sting of carbonation. The concept is a Tribute to “our troops”. The brand is apparently a favorite in the US Army.

my rating : 3 of 5

Rip It [ Sugar Free ] : Power

Rip It [ Sugar Free ] : Power

The name suggests this Rip It would be appropriate to consume before a boxing match or weightlifting competition; any physical activity that relies on Power. According to the promo, it “packs the unique flavor of what we imagine a sonic boom tastes like”. In fact it tastes like a standard Energy drink.

my rating : 3 of 5