Juvenile, "Beast Mode"

60 Billboard Rating

On his ninth solo album, "Beast Mode," New Orleans native Juvenile raps about what he knows best: thug life. The single "Drop That Azz" has a bright synth melody that coincides with a chorus about voluptuous women-a topic in which the rapper seems well-versed. A prime example of the confidence that's exuded on the set arrives during the track "I'm Da Man," where over victory-parade horns Juvenile raps about his rise from poverty to star. Elsewhere, "Drinks on Me" finds him predictably rhyming about buying drinks for his friends at a club. But with the accompaniment of a stripped-down beat he changes his gruff delivery to a seductive whisper on the highly sexual track "Pussy Kat." "Beast Mode" may rehash themes one would expect from a Juvenile album, but it displays a refreshing confidence from a rapper who's built a respectable career out of very little.

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