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[Review] [Album] The Quiett – ‘AMBITIQN’

2013_the quiett_amtitiqn

written by: drowningn00b

You could not escape the 1llionaire trio last year. Beenzino made his debut on the label with ‘24:26‘, selling out in less than a month, and Dok2 worked with damn near everyone who mattered, from B-Free and G-Dragon, to Jessica from Girls’ Generation.

At the helm of “The Year of the Gang” as I like to call it, was The Quiett; the CEO of the label. Having worked in the business for a long time, The Quiett built his career as a producer, while at the same time honing his own hip-hop style and smooth rap delivery. His last full-length release, 2011’s ‘Stormy Fridays‘ was sleepy, feeling like a nap rather than a hip-hop record.

His latest, ‘AMBITIQN‘, however aims high and nails it.


In the lead up to this record, The Q released three singles, two of which showed a change for the rapper. The summer singles, “Hotter Than The Summer” and “Get Dough” with Beenzino, signaled the beginning of more pop and dance elements, from the booty shaking guitar loop in the former to the reggae infusion in the latter. The Quiett was always the rapper with the smooth R&B sensibilities, so this quicker pace was a welcomed new step. The summer tracks are exceptional party songs, and if you haven’t listened to them yet, where have you been?

This change translated to his hip-hop songs. The songs hit harder and move in crazy ways. On the swag-tastic tracks “Gettin Rich” and the lead single “2 Chainz & Rollies” with Dok2, the drum sounds are big, the treble notes brighter and the overall feel is a polished grit only heard in bigger labels. For his part, The Q rides the beat on the former very well, but is weak on the chorus for the lead single, a problem that come up again in the “I’ve arrived” horn-blower, “The Greatest”. In it, The Quiett makes the claim that he’s one of the best, but the impact isn’t felt. The chorus doesn’t feel as grand as it should, as if he’s either too shy to go all the way, or doesn’t believe in his own words.


As new as some of the songs are for him, it’s the Quiett’s signature style that stands out in ‘AMBITIQN’. The title track is a funky hip-hop track, with exceptional instrumentation. He takes a similar approach in “Livin’ in the Dream” and the album-ender, “Beautiful Life”. Both feed his voice through an echo effect, and the production’s harsh sounds are dulled to create dreamy hip-hop soundscapes. It’s strange to hear these tracks in the same collection as “Hotter than the Summer”, but it shows that The Quiett is that good, able to straddle both genres without missing a beat or coming off as a gimmick. It’s that balance of the new and familiar that makes ‘AMBITIQN’, as a collection, a fantastic hip-hop record.

==

The Quiett has brought his smooth approach to music to a new level. He still uses it, but it’s now infused with heavier bass, harder drums and faster pacing. Tracks like “Get Dough”, “2 Chainz & Rollies” and “Hotter than the Summer” have Q embracing the pop side of music, incorporating singing and dance troupes. He’s also driving a much tougher hip-hop vibe, with “Getting Rich” and “1llionaire So Ambitious”. The Quiett’s style, as much as it’s changed, got better since “Stormy Fridays”, and ‘AMBITIQN’ is the record of a hip-hop CEO finally getting his due.

==

Scorecard

AMBITIQN
1
The Greatest
.5
A Long Way
.75
Tomorrow
1
Livin’ In The Dream
1
Get Dough
1
Getting Rich
1
2 Chains and Rollies
.75
Points scale
0 – could do without
0.5 – mediocre/filler
0.75 – pretty good/grew on me
1 – liked immediately
1llionaire So Ambitious
.5
Hotter Than The Summer
1
Beautiful Life
.75
Total Points
9.25

Points to stars conversion: [(9.25/11) x 5] + 0.25*

4.5/5


*there is a 0.25 bonus for every album. The logic is that, if every song were “pretty good”, it’s a 4-star album.

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