Published Apr 29, 2016Illadelph rapper Freeway's latest offering, Free Will, features more of what heads fond of MC's Roc-A-Fella days are accustomed to: thuggin' mixed with thuggin', with some extra thuggin' sprinkled in for good measure.
Freezer's got a gritty, smashmouth, Philly accent-tinged style, and his new LP shows no signs of any attempt to reinvent it. Largely produced by duo S. Frank & Scholito, Free Will is dominated by Freeway's "Addiction" to the street life, the ripest fruits of which are "Highway" and "Kane & Abel," the latter produced by L.E.S. and Chemist. The MC does occasionally abandon pushing white and stacking paper, namely to salute his supporters over gospel samples and horn arrangements on "Illuminate," and to fawn over his ride-or-die boo on the Raheem DeVaughn-assisted "Bennie & Stella."
While there's something to be said about honing a style and zealously sticking to it, Free Will suffers slightly from just that: this is the same old Freeway. The handful of breaks from his patented gutter raps aren't enough to compensate for the monotony in his dozen interchangeable guns-and-butter records. In other words, FW works best as either the new head's Freeway 101, or an easy fix for the old head yearning for some rarefied East coast grit. (Babygrande)