Freddie Gibbs had quite a stellar 2011. After dropping critically acclaimed mixtapes such as Labels trying to Kill me and Str8 Killa Figga along with other projects with Statik Selectah. It was only a matter of time before the openly brash but talented emcee would be picked up by a major. He found a home with Young Jeezy’s Corporate Thugz Entertainment label and now have a platform to express and share his stories along with his struggles.
A Cold Day In Hell maybe great enough to give Gibbs that credibility boost to capture the streets. Many people have been turned off due to his often outspokenness among his peers along with his sometime monotone flow. But one thing you can say about Gibbs is that he’s not only a breath of fresh air in a rap game full of singers and dancers. But he’s also proving that street hop is never going away.
What makes Gibbs stand out is his ability to reach the listeners ears with the subject manner he’s talking about. Whereas many rappers today appeal to millionaire tyrants, overpaid attention whores, and suburban rich kids who never have experienced any struggle. Gibbs gives his point of view of that of someone who’s caught up in the whirlwind of the everyday struggle and he paints pictures of what hardships regular people face. If it isn’t painting a picture of a man who’s desperate to commit armed robbery after feeling his backed against the wall on Rob Me a Nigga or expressing how he’s broke and finding ways to make it out the struggle on Anything To Survive . Gibbs have ways of penning his struggles without being too whiny or shows that he can get down as gangsta gibbs without sounding fabricated.
Theres still signs of the old “Gangsta Gibbs”. Fans of his old material would definitely want to check out on 187 Proof which pays homage to OG gangsta rapper Spice 1 and throws shots at rivals Rick Ross and Meek Mill
There are other songs such as Let Em Burn, Banned and Str8 Slamming which features hard-hitting production from Juicy J that shows he isn’t no pushover. Menace II Society which is the mix tape’s second single has Gibbs showing respect to the West Coast which is a good look considering the West’s impact on hip hop. Im also loving how Dom Kennedy shined on here
But it’s when Gibbs put his pen to the test is where he truly showcases his skill. Case in point on the album’s best track My Homeboy’s girlfriend where he talks about wrestling the guilty thoughts of sleeping of his best friend’s girlfriend while he was locked up.
Many people may feel Gibbs is selling out because of more of the mainstream feel to these tracks and the fact that there are more songs that are for the women. The difference is that the songs aimed for women aren’t too soft. He explores into aphrodisiacs on So Amazin Part 2 which is very smooth and could be comparable to Scarface’s Fuckfaces. ATL’s hot commodity Two Chainz join Gibbs on my other favorite cut Neighborhood Hoez which not only is a remake of Three 6 Mafia’s classic but they also use the classic Jodeci What About Us instrumental which was a surprise.
Cold Day in Hell is one of the best mixtapes to come out in 2011. 2012 could be Gibbs’ breakout year if he continues to make quality material like this