Volume 95, Issue 67

Friday, February 1, 2002

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Where's Waldo? We found him

Weekend fun for all

Disc of the Week

Tricky Woo hammers away at status quo

So, you want a tip?

Shits and Giggles

G-Dep Child still got the stigma

G-Dep Child still got the stigma

Child of the Ghetto

Bad Boy/Arista
Three stars (out of five)

The stigma is still there.

In the past, present and for the foreseeable future, any new rapper who comes out with an album on P-Diddy's Bad Boy label will hear the whispering comparisons to the Notorious B.I.G..

However, G-Dep's ticket to fame will be his originality. The Harlem native does not come from the cookie-cutter 'wanna-be-king-of-NY' mould. Instead of relying on lyrics, storytelling and smooth flow, he aims to please with a stop-and-go, multi-syllabic, somewhat non-sensical style.

The end result is a surprisingly entertaining album.

"Let's Get It" and "Special Delivery" have been played on many a DJ's turntable. On the former, Dep manages to deliver one of the worst rhymes of the year, but still outshines label brethren P-Diddy and Black Rob with his wit and catchy lines.

The latter showcases his signature style, backed by a crazy beat provided by hot-as-hell producer EZ Elpee.

"Keep It Gangsta" is exactly as the title suggests. Dep and currently incarcerated Bad Boy, Shyne trade male bravado over a nice piano loop backed by hard bass.

The Biggie/Bad Boy formula – the need to include familiar samples and jiggy show tunes for record sales – is in full effect on Child of the Ghetto and weak songs are the result. "Doe Fiends" is nothing short of disrespect to an Eric B & Rakim classic while "Smash On The First Night" simply sucks.

Replace songs like these and Dep's debut would have been nothing short of stellar. Leave them in and he's just another rapper waiting to bust out.

–Joel Brown

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