After the huge success of his long awaited, highly anticipated debut album "The Realness", Cormega decided to capitalize on his newfound popularity in the year 2002. With plans for a new LP "The True Meaning" and a re-release of his scraped debut Def Jam venture "The Testament", Mega looks bound for even greater success this year. However, acting as an appetizer for what's to come, Mega decided to release a "new album" of sorts full of unreleased material, collabo's and freestyles entitled "Hustler/Rapper".
At first glance "Hustler/Rapper" seems like another classic for QB's finest, however as always, looks can be deceiving. Not really an album of sorts, "Hustler/Rapper" is more like a bad mixtape thrown together to capitalize on his popularity and basically blindly rip people off. While "Hustler/Rapper" is full of some classic Cormega gems such as "Crime Side", "Loyalty", "Testament," "Angel Dust" & "Montana Diaries", they aren't even the full versions. For some reason or another, probably to wet our mouths for "The Testament", Mega decided to tease us with only a verse or two from each track. While the tracks are vintage, classic Cormega, the pending circumstances take away from their overall feel.
However, we are treated to the full versions for some of Cormega's finest guest appearances throughout his career such as the Prodigy banger "Three," the classic Mobb Deep collabo's of "What's Your Poison?" & "Killaz Theme." Along with the Tony Touch "Piecemaker Interlude," the overlooked Hi-Tek gem "All I Need Is You," "They Forced My Hand" and "Who Can I Trust," Thrown in are numerous freestyles Mega's created over the years, various Mega verses from "Da Bridge 2001", "Straight Outta QB", and numerous Firms tracks "Affirmative Action", its accompanying remix & "La Familia".
"Poetry" is the only new track featured on "Hustler/Rapper," which is of course an anger filled diss track going against everybody's favorite target Nas. While not his finest effort, Mega once again goes at Nas' street credibility and flips each of Nas' tracks over the years into one big verse full of hate. While the track is a decent effort, this long running beef is definitely getting a little stale and maybe Mega should concentrate his work on other areas from now on.
Basically, "Huslter/Rapper" is an average attempt for people unfamiliar with Mega's material to become aquatinted and catch up on his earlier work. While entertaining, "Hustler/Rapper" could have been put together a lot better. Full versions of his older material and better mixing of each track would have definitely helped the albums cause immensely. Any average person with a cd burner could basically make this album only 10x better. Die-hard Cormega fans will be pleased with this latest effort, for others "Hustler/Rapper" is nothing more than a collector's item to add to your collection.