Vinnie Paz - Carry on Tradition EP (Review)

Vinnie Paz - Carry on Tradition EP

"Carry on Tradition" is the second EP by Jedi Mind Tricks emcee Vinnie Paz. The EP features guest appearances from Chris Rivers, Spit Gemz, Blacastan and others as well as production from The Arcitype, C-Lance, ILLinformed and others. It was released on October 22nd, 2013.

1) God Bless - The EP kicks off with the first song that was released in promotion of the album and it's absolute fire. The beat, by Mikey Bingo, is hard as hell and sets the tone and energy level of the album straight out of the gate. Lyrically Vinnie Paz comes through and rips it, kicking some of his usual braggadocios and aggressive bars in his unique, gritty flow.
"Oh yall want a fatal disease? - God bless
Oh yall trying to prey on me? - God bless
Ain't nobody fucking with V - God bless
The seventh day best for me - So God rest"
This song is banging and is some classic Vinnie Paz shit. Very dope way to start off the EP.

2) The Devil’s Ransom (featuring Jarren Benton and Lawrence Arnell) - This song has another intense instrumental, this time courtesy of MTK. I'm not feelin' the beat quite as much as the first, but it's not that bad. As far as the vocals go, I'm not really familiar with Jarren Benton, but he sounds pretty good on here and spits some wild lyrics. Vinnie comes the hardest, though, while Lawrence Arnell just provides the chorus. Eh, not bad, but definitely not as good as the previous track.

3) No More Games (featuring Chris Rivers and Spit Gemz) - Lecs Beats comes through with a darker instrumental with some ominous keys and eerie vocal samples. The beat is quite dope and Chris Rivers bodies it while both Spit Gemz and Vinnie come correct as well. I'm really looking forward to hearing more from Chris Rivers in the future since he seems to channel his fathers breathless flow while still maintaining his own unique identity as an emcee. This is ill.

4) Envy the Dead (featuring Scott Stallone) - This song has a somewhat less intense, though no less cinematic, instrumental with more piano keys and a resonant snare over deep bass. Scott Stallone both produces the song as well as provides some singing on the chorus. Lyrically Vinnie comes through and kicks some heartfelt and honest rhymes about someone who seems to have done him wrong. I'm not sure who he is talking about, exactly, but it almost sounds to me like he is talking about Jesus in some spots. Any thoughts on this? Regardless, I'm feelin' this track. Very dope.

5) Bleed for Me (featuring Zilla, Sino, and Blacastan) - ILLinformed comes through with a head-nodding instrumental featuring some more pianos and horns over hard-ass drums. The beat is dope, but this song is just ok for me, mainly due to the somewhat generic verses from a few of the guest emcees. The song is not terrible, but it doesn't really stand out from any of the other tracks on the EP to me.

6) In the Middle of Nowhere (featuring Lawrence Arnell, Slaine and Rite Hook) - This song has another ill instrumental, this time provided by The Arcitype, that has some softer chimes and pianos over head-nodding drums. As on the previous track, however, the beat outshines the verses, which surprisingly dont really do much to grab my attention outside of Slaine and Vinnie's verses. Oh well, another ok track for me.

7) Innermost Hate (featuring G-Mo Skee) - Frequent Vinnie Paz/Jedi Mind Tricks producer C-Lance makes his first appearance on the EP and its ok. The beat is good, but not great, and seems to blend in with a few of the other instrumentals on this half of the EP. The song features two verses by guest emcee G-Mo Skee (whom I'm not familiar with) and Vinnie closes out the track, with both emcees just spitting some graphic rhymes about their innermost hate. Again, there is nothing about this song that really jumps out and grabs my attention. Oh well.

8) Is Happiness Just a Word (featuring Yes Alexander) - Now THIS is dope. The Arcitype returns with an absolute banging instrumental that is somber and yet hopeful at the same time. Vinnie reflects the sincere feel of the beat and kicks some very personal rhymes about his lifelong battle with Depersonalization Disorder, which makes a person feel disconnected from their own body. The lyrics are frank and help to give the listener a look into the mind of Vinnie Paz while Yes Alexander provides a beautiful chorus. This shit is fire and is a real ill way to close out the EP. I'd go as far to say this is one of Vinnie's best tracks period.

I'm going to rate the EP

3 / 5

because there are some real bangers on here, but there is a bit of filler as well. As usual for a Vinnie Paz or Jedi Mind Tricks album, the beats are almost all top notch, with most having a merciless drive and epic feel to them. Lyrically Vinnie Paz comes correct on all of his verses and touches on a wide variety of topics, from his usual aggressive and violent rhymes to more somber and personal tracks. The thing that holds this EP back from being really great is an overabundance of bland guest verses. A few of the guests really add to the track they are featured on, but most just seem almost like filler to me. Still, the EP has some classic Vinnie Paz material on it and is a must have for any JMT fan.


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