"PRhyme" is a collaborative album from Slaughterhouse emcee Royce Da 5'9" and legendary hip-hop producer DJ Premier. The album features guest appearances from Ab-Soul, Mac Miller, Common, Jay Electronica, Killer Mike, Schoolboy Q and others with all production being handled by DJ Premier himself. It was released on December 9, 2014 via PRhyme Records.
1) Prhyme - The first song on the album finds Royce Da 5'9" rhyming about a wide variety of topics over a lush DJ Premier instrumental that samples Los Angeles based composer/producer Adrian Younge. I guess now is a good time to mention that the entire LP is actually made up of Adrian Younge samples, which is kind of cool I guess. Anyways, the beat is pretty nice and Royce changes up his flow a few times while flowing over it, but this cut is not as mind blowing as I was hoping for when I first heard of this collaboration. Still, not bad by any means. - 3.5/5
2) Dat Sound Good (featuring Ab-Soul and Mac Miller) - Now this is dope. The beat on this cut sounds more like the classic DJ Premier that I'm used to, with a chopped up sample on loop over boom-bap drums and ill scratching on the chorus. The beat bangs and everyone comes correct over it, even Mac Miller (who I thought might have been outshined on here). Why couldn't Ab-Soul have rhymed over beats like this for his last album? - 4.25/5
3) U Looz - DJ Premier delivers another banger on this joint, looping up some dusty reverberating guitars over drums that definitely got me nodding my head. As far as the rhymes go, Royce comes through and just bodies the instrumental, but only ends up kicking one verse (which is very disappointing since that beat bangs). This shit should have been longer, but it is what it is. Still, this cut is fire. - 4.5/5
4) You Should Know (featuring Dwele) - Royce Da 5'9" kicks some crazy braggadocios bars over yet another dope instrumental from DJ Premier. The beat is fire, the rhymes are on point and Dwele sounds real good on the chorus. This album is sounding really nice so far. - 4.25/5
5) Courtesy - This was one of the singles released in promotion of the album and it's quite dope, with Royce mixing up some boastful bars with more personal rhymes over a slower, organ-based instrumental from Primo. The drums are hard and got me nodding my head yet again and Royce spits fire over them. Can't ask for much more than that. - 4/5
6) Wishin (featuring Common) - Royce Da 5'9" links up with legendary Chi-town emcee Common over another ill DJ Premier production. The beat is real dope and actually changes up a few times throughout the song, starting off with an intense guitar loop with ambient crowd noises in the background before morphing into a signature DJ Premier banger. Both parts of the instrumental are nice and both emcees kill it with their verses. I'm especially feelin' the part when Royce mentions that Karma will catch up with Solar. Dope shit. - 4/5
7) To Me To You (featuring Jay Electronica) - This song finds Royce and the ever elusive Jay Electronica rhyming about whatever they feel like over a laid back guitar and organ based instrumental. The beat is kind of dark and both emcees sound nice over it, especially Jay Electronica who needs to hurry the hell up and drop an album already. - 4/5
8) Underground Kinds (featuring Schoolboy Q and Killer Mike) - Well this is an odd combination of emcees that I never really pictured coming together on one track. The funny thing is that it works....and quite well. The beat is real energetic, with a lively sample from Adrian Younge's "Thunderstrike", and all three "underground kings" rip it. I don't really consider Schoolboy Q as "underground" anymore since "Oxymoron" dropped, but it's all good. Dope track. - 4/5
9) Microphone Preem (featuring Slaughterhouse) - The final song on the album finds Royce, Joell Ortiz, Crooked I and Joe Buddens coming together as Slaughterhouse over a yet another ill DJ Premier instrumental. The beat is nice, with more organs over hard ass snare drums, and you know the rhymes are going to be good when these four guys get together. Dope way to close out the album - 4/5
I'm going to rate the album
4 / 5
because it's really good. DJ Premier blesses the album beautifully on the production side, using only samples from Adrian Younge's catalog and chopping them up to make them his own. Sampling from one artist is something that Primo has never done before, but it gives the album a consistent feel and actually works out quite well in the end. As far as the rhymes go, Royce Da 5'9" raps just as well on this album as he has on all of his other projects. If you weren't feeling his occasionally rapid-fire delivery and bars full of witty punchlines before, then you probably won't be here either. Me, I've always been a fan. My only complaint about the album is that it is just too short, with only nine tracks that just left me wanting more. I did see a recent tweet from Primo saying that a "Deluxe Edition" is in the works with three extra tracks, so I'll have to keep an eye out for that since it would help make this complaint even less valid. Overall, though, the album is really dope and is one of my favorite releases of 2014.