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Bow Wow - The Price of Fame

2007-06-04 11:52
The beats are by Jermaine Dupree, and there are a host of guests (Lil Scrappy, Lil Wayne, Short Dawg, Da Brat to name a few) to mix things up. The monochrome cover with a red logo work nicely with Bow Wow's menacing stare, because we know this guy means business, and for concerned parents, this album is also totally profanity free!

How does this guy even put out records? He must be rolling in the dough, because even being Snoop's cousin can only take you so far, right? Apparently money and connections can take you to the moon and back, because this isn't the sort of record a savvy company would fund if they didn't mind flushing a whole lot down the toilet.

The Price of Fame starts on its highest note with the title track, which is a hooky song that comes across like a pale imitation of 50 cent with a less distinctive delivery. From there on in, it is all a downhill stumble into mediocrity. The beats are unremarkable and interchangeable – with 80 percent of radio friendly hip hop – and frankly Bow Wow isn't much of a rapper these days. His voice doesn't stand out, he doesn't have any presence, and he sounds distinctly like a has-been child star floundering in an adult world. Most importantly – for hip hop fans – his turn of phrase is rubbish. If he had recorded this album at age 12, the infantile lyrics would have been understandable if not entirely palatable, but now? No thank you.

With a lame mix of toothless commercial gangsta stylings and more romantic R&B tinged numbers, Bow Wow lurches from one unconvincing persona to another like a drunk old man unable to find the pub door. He has just become another throwaway voice with nothing to say, and nothing to make him stand apart from the vast crowd now that the youth has all dried up. He's not as smooth as Snoop by a long shot, and he doesn't have the menace of 50 cent, or the interesting personal history. Who really wants to hear a young man showboating about his non-existent personal trials and achievements in the most derivative way imaginable?

"When it comes to this rap game, I'm on fire" he oozes with confidence on track "On Fiya", and "I'm the prince of the hip hop game" he proclaims on mission statement "Price of fame" which also contains the rather priceless "I make this whole rap thing look so easy". He really does make it seem easy. All you need is a rich uncle and the ability to form words with your mouth and you too can have a crap record on a major label! If a lot of empty boasting over bland and generic pop hip-hop is your thing though, make sure you pick this one up. Personally, I thought the he should have quit after starring in Like Mike.

- Ivan Sadler

Catch Nonhle on "O-Access" on Channel O on Sundays at 11am with a special rebroadcast on Tuesdays at 6:30 pm and Saturdays at 5:30pm.
Bow Wow is all grown up on his fifth album, strutting like a thug, and staking his claim to the hip hop throne.

Watch Nonhle with Bow Wow on Channel O: Back to school for Bow

Channel O’s Nonhle chats to Bow Wow and Chris Brown

What to read next: Kalahari

Carlos De Milos 2007-05-22 08:50 AM
Lil who? Sit down and shut up little man.... Go back to creche!
njunju 2007-06-13 03:10 PM
im loving it i think bowwow did a great job and should keep recording more videos
Kgethi 2007-08-31 12:03 PM
Great album This was an outstanding profanity-free album.How this so-called analyst branded this album bad is beyond me.Please credit where credit's due.

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