A horrible hack

Record Review

Taz

Analyse This

Year Released: 2004
Format: 12" EP
Label: Def Jam UK
 
Reviewed by Unknown on Jun 13, 2007
Hmm, this record is so conflicted it is not true! The one sheet that accompanied this major label release seemed to mention Dizzee Rascal as much as it mentioned Taz! That's fair enough, Taz worked on one of the tracks from 'Boy in da Corner' but for someone from a similar scene the albums are pretty different. While Dizzee captured the dark and gritty nature of street life, Taz is softer and aiming for a more American sound... And that's where this record fails. Too much Jay-Z and Eminen and not enough Taskforce or Braintax. Even after the first listen of this album I lost count of the number of Jay-Z references, not just name checks but borrowed lines and replicated subject matter!

When he is delivering his standard flow, Taz sounds very much like any of the Low Life roster, which is no bad thing, but it all goes wrong when he pushes the American sound or when he tries to write a catchy hook. His flow is fairly decent, but his word skills are not great and his rhymes are pretty easy to deliver so there is nothing to really test his skills. Even on his track 'Flow Pro' there are no moments that make you stop and think "yeah, he is good..." Its all just so average. As I said about the word skills, its not helped by his use of the same old tired subject matter... The British city life thing has been done far better by plenty more people and there seems to be little substance behind his documentation of 'ghetto' life and his tracks about the "lonely ladies" are ridiculous, he sounds so damn cheesy.

Another thing that really lets this album down the most is how weak the beats are. There is nothing new or fresh out of the 12 tracks on here and when they try and push the envelope it just sounds annoying. (Like the electro beat on Can't Contain Me) To compare it to its peers, this album is nowhere near the standard of the work on Boy In Da Corner or any of the work on Wiley's recent album. What could have been a great UK hip-hop record has just ended up a poor mix of a watered down Dizzee Rascal and all the east coast hip hop records that Taz probably grew up with. More time should have been spent his bedroom working in this before attempting to take it public, I can't believe he has got a deal with Def Jam on the back of this. (Except from the fact they just signed up the first person the could on the back of 'you know who' doing well.)

2/10

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