If you ask me, and anybody else who gave The Darkside an honest listen, Fat Joe has been highly overlooked lately. He may not be the most consistent MC, but you cannot deny that this BX boy can spit. Pushing Keys is Joe in top form, with a double entendre hook that shouts out Mrs. Dean, and verses demonstrating why those who claim Joe is garbage just aren’t listening. Mark Henry’s beat bangs and brings back feelings of classic NY hip-hop that the streets have been missing. You can tell he was influenced by RZA, and the Wu’s earlier work. Speaking of the Shaolin collective, The Chef surprisingly doesn’t rhyme one line, but instead lends his voice to the song to talk some gangsta (yet kind of random) ish, which actually works for the street vibe of the record. While the record isn’t attached to any album, those who need more music like this banger can cop Raekwon’s new LP on March 8. Wherever Pushing Keys ends up officially, it’ll be on rotation in my house until they figure it out.
Written by Jessica "Compton" Bennett on 02/23/11
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