Fans who’ve been with Joe Budden from day 1, quickly realize that this new album from the Jersey native is the ultimate reinvention. No Love Lost is Budden’s most commercial, most female friendly, most feature friendly album—all more so then his self-titled 2003 debut. Throughout the album there are light appearances of the artist that garnered a large part of his following from his Mood Muzik releases, but for the most part this is a “new and improved Budden.” That is evident from No Love Lost’s “Intro,” what may be the first beat ever that Joe’s been around and not laid a verse to. True, Budden said to expect change, but rappers say stuff all the time, Game said he wouldn’t name drop on his last album!
With that in mind this album has to be reviewed under the same criticism of a debut album.
The first thought that comes to mind the first few listens in here is that the way this album is put together is quite similar to Maino’s sophomore album, also released on E1 Entertainment. Both artists were at similar points in their career when putting it together and they both have that East Coast flare. Maino’s was an album I enjoyed for its ability to be commercial yet true to the core of Hip-Hop. Budden has the same tendencies.
“N.B.A.” finds Budden matched up with Wiz Khalifa and French Montana on a braggadocious track, promising to be, “Never broke again.” Neither of the rappers makes an telling effort to out rap the other, more of a meeting of minds on their wealth increase.
The aforementioned theme isn’t a popular one on the album and soon thereafter he gets into some of his darker material, starting with “Castles” and equally matched on “Skeletons in My Closet,” “Ghetto Burbs” and “All In My Head,” which was featured on his Loose Quarter mixtape. The four tracks are No Love Lost‘s climax in terms of a stretch of content and even in familiarity featuring the other Slaughterhouse and Joe Budden favorite, Emanny.
Joe Budden provides a healthy helping of songs for the ladies on this album, where the album can sometimes fall short. “Switch Positons,” which features Omarion is one of the albums missteps, but he quickly rebounds a track later on “Tell Him Something,” produced and featured on by SLV. The beat is far more R & B than Hip-Hop but Budden does a solid job of overpowering the hook.
“No Love Lost” the album’s outro is my personal favorite. Story telling is an art and while he does so throughout the album, the final touch is composed the best.
It takes some adjusting to, but Budden delivers a complete project. If ol’ skool Moose is what you’re looking for, you might not get what you expect, but quaity Hip-Hop can’t be denied. By the end of the project you realize it’s still Joe Budden, with his delivery and wordplay still in tack, he’s still one of the best in the game today.
No Love Lost receives a PARL
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Pusha T – Wrath of Caine mixtape download
Joe Budden – A Loose Quarter mixtape download