Mobb Deep signing to G-Unit in 2005 had it both Pros and Cons. From a financial standpoint it was a great move because 50 advanced them with 2 porches, homes, and got them out of label limbo. The Cons however was that it made the group look small time and their album Blood Money felt a bit too G-Unit influenced. By the time 2007 rolled around G-Unit was slowly showing signs of slowly falling due to 50’s oversatuation and that he pretty much isolated his whole camp from the Industry. Prodigy started feeling the urge to take things on a Independent level and received 50’s blessing to do a deal with Koch Records(Which became a topic of Cam and 50’s beef) for 3 solo albums. To further gain interest and also raise speculation of possible tension with Havoc, He wanted to do a album with Mobb in-house producer Alchemist titled Return of the Mac.
The Concept is very unique. Both Prodigy and Al adapt the moniker of gangsters from the movie Hoodlum(Bumpy Johnson and Dutch Shultz) and the overall vibe pays homage to the 70’s Blaxpotation era. This was originally supposed to have been a mixtape to promote Prodigy’s up and coming HNIC 2 album. However the quality of the material was so unique that it was a better idea to release it on retail.
Mac 10 handles was a great street single to promote the album. It was a great ode to the Geto Boys Classic Mind Playing Tricks on me with Prodigy expressing his paranoia of people trying to get him. AL also does a tremendous job of recapturing that classic Mobb Deep sound on songs such as New York Shit(which ironically samples Tupac), Stuck On You, and Rotten Apple.
This album showed that Prodigy still have some left in the tank.To be frank, The abstract days of him flowing like he did on Apostle’s Warning are long and gone. But he can still ride a beat pretty well and the content range from gun talk(Bang on Em) to tackling the hypocrisy of religion(7th Heaven) to gangsterism(Nickle and a Nail). The album flows through like a mini movie on wax due to the nice sound-scape.
Aside from a couple of mishaps, This was the album Prodigy needed to show that Mobb Deep was a force at that time. He also showed that he can still put out good music when he has the right producers behind him.
Vic Da Ruler
8.5 out of 10