Likwit Junkies - The L.J.'s   
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written by Plus One   
Since "Focused Daily" Defari has gained quite the following, however, it seems that since that release, the emcee has gone rapidly downhill. Although briefly working with the likes of Dre and being loosely involved with High Times' record label, Defari never made as much of an impact other than when he first came onto the scene. Even experimenting with the alias Billy The Kidd didn't seem to work quite as well. His bitterness became extremely prevalent when in an interview he criticized Ugly Duckling and Atmosphere, artists which you would assume sell way less than him.

The Likwit Junkies comprise of Defari and Dilated/Beat Junkies phenom, DJ Babu. Babu's involvement covers the production and DJ (scratched hook) aspacts, essentially making the album Defari's with a couple of guests.

From the "LJ's Anthem" onwards, we're loosely entertained by melodramatic material and recycled concepts. "LJ's Anthem" features a sung hook, which does not work and Defari's simple rhyme scheme/loose conceit seems irrelevant. "One Day Away" has Defari rhyming awkwardly, speeding up his typically slow pace and stating the obvious. Then there's "The Interview," which seemingly mocks journalists through a Q&A interview style to create the subject matter. The track is average, the main problem is that artists like Swollen Members have already released tracks with the same concept, but handled them considerably better.

"Change" is a decent track, but also is a recycled concept not handled to a decent enough degree. The story-telling track talks about "Changing your life" - a small tale of a drug addict and then a story of an abused child. The track's best feature is the scratched up Inspektah Deck sample.

"The L.J.'s" album isn't all bad, and is at its best with "The Good Green" - an ode to weed. The innuendo supplied; treating different varieties as if they were different women and the rhyme scheme help make the track work. The simple beat and under whelming sample fit to allow Defari to shine. The decent "Dark Ends" would be a much better track had the hook not been a complete butchering of it's original (James Carr's "Dark End Of The Street"). The track, which features Iriscience includes a sample of a remake singing "At the dark end of the street" then Defari shouting "Where you don't wanna be! Where you don't wanna be!" Another hook would have done so much for the track.

"Dreamgirl" and "6 In The Morning" help the worth of the release. The oddly high pitched sung hook works on "Dreamgirl" and Defari's simple rapping works above this whimsical beat. "6 In The Morning" includes a cool reggae influenced slow beat with Defari experimenting with a Rastafarian accent. "S.C.A.N.S." also is worth mentioning on the good side of this spectrum.

It's also very noticeable that this man liked "The Matrix." Defari references it three times too many, it's as if he took a leaf from Game's book but managed to keep the references down to a humble number. The album is a disappointment for those who've loved Defari's earlier work. Babu does a decent job, but the album isn't what we'd hoped.

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