The Hip Hop Mortuary

"I wax lyrics so poetic even the most narcoleptic skeptic feels awake and perceptive"

1:34 PM

Joe Budden/ Halfway House

Posted by Guy Fawkes

First, I want to apologize to everyone who checks this site regularly, I really have been slacking lately. Second, I will no longer post direct links to full-album downloads, but I will push you in the right direction if you in fact want to acquire an album (you'll see at the bottom of the post). And last, if you work for the DMCA, you are not welcome here, under any means.
Since I haven't posted for about a week and a half, I might as well take on some exclusive shit in the form of Joey Budden's latest. Halfway House, is being released as an album strictly to provide Joey's fans something to feed on after Padded Room got pushed back to the end of February. Lately Joey has been running shit on the coast. His song Who, was huge in the blog universe a few months back. And the newest installment in his highly acclaimed mixtape series Mood Muzik has been made into an album, and re-mixed by countless producers. Shit's looking real good for Jump-off Joey right now.

1. Intro-
Your typical lame-ass intro: "Sorry for the push-backs, I've been grinding lately". Seems like every rapper is using that as an excuse nowadays. Sprinkle in a few "L"'s and you get an instant skip. But it is an intro...
2. On My Grind-
This sounds like one of those high-octane rock-rap songs, and the beat is really abrasive. I was impressed with the lyricism but the flow doesn't match the instrumental. And the hook shreds any piece of respectability to shreds. "He's a beast, he's a monster, he is insane, he's an animal, he cannot be tamed". Really Joe? Really? Come on...
3. Overkill (feat. Heartbreak)-
Sounds like it might have been a reject from Mood Muzik 3, I say that in the best way of course. Blastah Beatz tries a little too hard here, the instrumental sounds real dramatic and a little forced. And even though it's Joey's track, Heartbreak fucking puts this beat in a coffin, cold bodying the track with his puchlines and lyricism. I've never even heard of his dude, but I was really surprised and impressed with the verse he turned in... trust me it is ill as fuck! Buddens goes second and even though his verse is straight, it doesn't even compare to Heartbreak's sixteen bars.
Check it here, you'll be glad you did.
4. Check Me Out-
This track starts off slow and quickly gains momentum. The first minute and a half is pretty weak, but once Joe becomes introspective the lyrics start to mean more and this song makes a turn for the better. The instrumental is more of what I was expecting: soulful, poignant production, this time by Mizfitz Soundz.
5. Sidetracked-
I wasn't feeling this track at all. Weak-ass beat, and the lyricism is overly-predictable. Easy skip for me.
6. Slaughterhouse (feat. Royce Da 5'9, Crooked I, Nino Bless, and Joell Ortiz)-
The posse cut that puts all other posse cuts to shame. I have to admit that as soon as this album downloaded, this was the very first song I was eager to hear. Just an all-star lineup right here. And Scram Jones' instrumental immediately grabs your ears, it just commands attention. And then everybody throws in their best effort, I'm not a huge Joell fan, but he really does come with straight crack on the track. Nino and Crooked are no exception either. But Royce straight fucking murders this beat! He is by far the best lyricist of the group, and he proves his worth in spades here. Surprisingly, I found Joey to once again be the worst of the group. Still, that's not saying much because he turns in a decent verse here.
7. Under The Sun-
I never thought that a Bryan Adams sample would fit a hip-hop instrumental of any type, but I was wrong. Hazed Khaos does a great job of fitting that sample into the instrumental here. The first verse has unmatched intensity, but after that it drops off to a pretty low level. The last verse was materialistic and phony as hell. It's still a pretty good song though.
8. The Soul-
The beat sounds like something a post-Black Album Jay-Z might have rapped over. But this song seemed like filler to me. A half-assed ode to hip-hop back in the day.
9. Anything Goes-
Skip/delete this one, it's weak all-around.
10. Go To Hell-
Wasn't really feeling this one either. The rhymes are getting a little bit monotonous at this point. And this Blastah Beatz production doesn't compare favorably to his previous one.
11. Just To Be Different-
There are some weird-ass samples on this album; Styx, Coldplay, Bryan Adams, and Shinedown. A lot of R&R influence for a hip-hop album. Especially for a Joey Budden album, you'd think he would stay away from Coldplay since Jay's worked with them.
This is a great song, once again Joey is introspective here, yet he comes with some of his best material. A great instrumental here, and the awkward hook is the only thing that really detaches from the song. It's sampled in a Ghetto Gospel manner, substituting Elton John with Shinedown.
12. Touch & Go-
I listened to about one minute of this song and instantly deleted it. It's pretty bad even as far as singles go. Really Joe? Really?

And that will conclude this album, I don't have the Amalgam bonus tracks, so I can't really say anything about them. This album was pretty average, and it didn't really do all that much for Joey in my opinion. It's less of an album and more of a compilation of unreleased tracks, which explains why you go from absolute genius like Overkill and Slaughterhouse to mediocrity like The Soul and Go To Hell to plain-terrible like Touch & Go. Considering it's not an actual album, it's not so bad. I would recommend acquiring about half of the album, as the first half is actually really good, but staying far away from the second half. It's also kind of interesting that Joey is at his best when he talks about his internal problems, drug problems, and anything emotional. Heavily reminiscent of an early Eminem, although they have two completely different styles.

0-20: Terrible listening experience
21-40: Maybe one good song
41-60: A few good songs
61-80: Half are good songs, half are weak
81-100: Great listening experience, almost all are great songs

I give this album a 74.

You can find a download link here


clnmike said...

I'll pass on it.

Anonymous said...

yea....its about that time that you keep up with the

Lyriciss Flowz said...

In no way do I mean any disrespect, but...this review sucks. And I'd have to question your taste in hip-hop and lyricism when you'd pick Heartbreak's pretty basic verse ("You're like Nextel, who you gon' tell next?") over Joe's verse ("avoid the boys sparkin/cuz everything is funny til a nigga's George Carlin" & "for Oprah bills, i'd turn this bitch into Cloverfield") on "Overkill".

Anonymous said...

Smh @ this review

it seems like most of the track go over ur head son

sidetracked is easily the best track and one of the dopest concept of the year
and overkill is one of the worst budden track ever realised
and lmao@ dickriding heartbreak verse which is the worst of the album

U know nothing about "lyricism"
prove is u feel royce verse on slaughterhouse which is lyricaly the worst of this possecut, and its not even close

But that review definine you as a hater, a cool hater but a hater

Guy Fawkes said...

Now that I listened to "Overkill" again, I see that y'all are right. Not much to his lyricism. He does aesthetically sound a lot better than Joey on the track though.

And I listened to "Sidetracked again"... shit still sucks. lol.
I don't really think you can criticize my taste at all if you enjoy a song like that homie.

Lyriciss Flow, you did take Joey's best compared to Heartbreak's worst... which is a pretty uneven comparison in the first place.

The Invisible Man said...

Sidetracks a decent concept but there's NO way he's topping Jay's verse on it so I can't get into it's straight though

and I don't agree with Heartbreak lyrically spanking Joe but Joe's voice don't match up that sounds like it was mixed weird...I heard that same verse in some "freestyle" and shit sounded so much better

@ anonymous - you got a different version of slaughterhouse? in the one i got royce shits on everyone

Praverb said...

I listened to Halfway House and I will agree with the review abit...I mean if you are a Joe Budden stan then of course you may think the album is dope as ever...I think that some of the songs are hit or miss...unlike Mood Music 3 where most of the songs were on point...but this is an appetizer for Padded we will see

drug treatment said...

Many artists have tasted drugs and make confessions about its bad effects.You can see it on their lyrics and rhymes .
The confessions about how drugs ruin there lives and now look at them after neglecting drugs (like Eminem).
Keeping away from drugs is another step closer to success.