Many Hip Hop heads may remember Devin the Dude from the interesting explicit cameo on Dr Dre’s Fuck You off his Chronic 2001 album. But if you really if you’re a real deep follower of Southern music, You would know that Devin has been in a game for a long minute going back to being apart of the FaceMob whom debuted in 1995. He started building a solid following which led him to Making cameos on everybodys album reigning from Scarface to JayZ’s and R.Kellys Best of Both Worlds album. He had an album out but due to poor promoting and lack of airplay,
But nevertheless Devin kept on grinding, doing tours, making album appearances on well name cats and even landed a spot on Dr Dre’s Up and Smoke Tour. My opinion about Devin’s music is that he’s a very dope artist, He’s kind of like a Dirty South version of Nate Dogg when it comes to singing misogynistic hooks about women but he’s also a pretty good rapper.
His 2nd album titled Just Tryin To Live covers the usual that Devin is about, Hoes, drinking, smoking, But the album is pretty enjoyable and hilarious for the most part. The introduction to the album is very funny where Devin is like some kind of robot by the name of Zeldar who landed on a planet full of green leaves and sticky icky. It’s A Shame which is a track about getting drunk and picking up women and his trouble of dealing with them is cooked banger which is assisted by a nice bouncy touch from The good ol doc Dr Dre.
The album continues to get better as we get a touch of Devins witty side on tracks like R&B(meaning Reefer and Beer) where he’s conversing with a Redneck he picked up while driving. Hes trying to teach him how to sing and how to be down with the lingo but gets out of hand once he tries to say the word “nigga”. He also tells funny stories like about what happened to his Lacville car on “Lacville 79” or how he’s getting clowned by kids on I Hi.
The album’s best track features surprising cameos from Xzibit and Nas titled Some of Em. Many may be surprised that the production on this track wasnt done by Dre but by T-Mix for Suave House Production. Xzibit and Devin come through with stellar performances but Nas straight up kills this verse which was at the time was momentum built from Stillmatic and where he felt he had alot to prove.
However on the 2nd half of the album, Some of the tracks reign from average to sometimes boring and thats when they mainly feature Devin’s crew the Odd Squad which aren’t too bad but just doesn’t hang with Dev. But despite filler songs such as Would Ya,The Two Odd Squad featured tracks, There are still bright moments on the 2nd half such as The DJ Premier produced Doobie Astray as Devin reminisces about being broke and having no weed to smoke. Many would be suprised that Premo provided the funky sound on this track proving that he can be versatile. Whatever is very funny and creative as he’s rhyming cleverly to snippets from Ice T and WYMZ is a story about troubled relationships that result to domestic Violence.
Overall This album is a breath of fresh air for Southern Hip Hop fans who are tired of Dirty south repetitive subject manner of fast cars, simple songs, simple hooks, and Tryin to Live shows that there’s more to the Southern Rap scene than all of that. Definitely worth checking out
Vic Rating: 8.7 outta 10