Pretending that J. Rawls doesn't have an immensely huge amount of talent in the art of production, is a test of one's acting abilities. He doesn't get on the mic much, which could be a good thing...No, I'm not insulting the man, but behind the boards is where he shines the most. He and J. Sands; The Lone Catalysts, have been creating quality independent Hip Hop for a number of years now, and continue to create quality material, which on the whole, is on a very relaxed vibe.
'The Essence Of J. Rawls' basically re-iterates to us the fact that J. Rawls is very much able to shine as a producer with ease. Enlisting a variety of talented artists, Rawls manages to throw out a variety of subjects and create a very enjoyable compilation.
There are no bad tracks here, there are a few average cuts, but the majority of them blow you away. From the slow paced, bouncy 'Superhero' performed by Mass Influence to J-Live's hyper 'Great Live Caper' beat, to the thought inspiring, quiet beat on 'Far Away, Rawls demonstrates his production flexibility. Each beat here works smoothly and efficiently with the artist(s) performing. Overlooking 'Cold Turkey' and a couple of the aforementioned tracks would be idiotic. J-Live aids both in rhyming and scratching on 'Great Live Caper,' a great tale about his home being robbed with his rhyme book being stolen. Perfectly done. 'Far Away' features Apani and Mr. Complex talking about being distant from loved ones yet wanting to check out the world. And, 'Cold Turkey,' performed by Mr. Greenweedz and Capital D is another perfect track.
Of course, there are many more gems here, such as Dose One and J. Sands' 'Meniscus,' a remix to a self-titled 'Lone Catalysts' track, Grap Luva and Asheru's contributions. There's a lot of quality here.
In essence, 'The Essence Of J. Rawls,' essentially is dope. Definitely worth picking up if you enjoy relaxing while listening to quality music.