The Queens, New York Hip Hop duo, consisting of members Capone and N.O.R.E., released their third album as C-N-N in 2009, nearly ten years since their last effort, and so you are bound to see significant changes since then with the sound advancing fairly significantly and having them both release solo albums in this gap.
2. "United We Stand"
To get things underway we have a track which has them make up for lots time as they do a hardcore rap track to bring the two together and have them show what power they have together with them going for some rough Gangsta Rap. It has them taking on what is popular today in the current style of East Coast Rap.
As 2008 saw Ron Browz, EtherBoy step up as a solo artist, and with this his new style as a heavily auto-tuned singer, as well as rapper and producer finds him working with both Busta Rhymes (to whom he gave "Arab Money") but also this pair, with a track which has them taking it all the way into this new club thing which is popping out in New York.
4. "Talk To Me Big Time"
After that burst of energy, you have them resorting to their typical stuff as they go back to the darker rap, but I have to say that I'm really not into this kind of thing, and despite have The Inkredibles backing them to give the best of what today's big production acts have to offer, but with it N.O.R.E. comes with some annoying flows and the most irritating hook you will get here.
5. "Bring It Here"
Here you have them coming with some murder rap to do more to enforce the fact that they were some big names back in their day, but as you are mad to see it this way, you can't help but compare it to their earlier material, which is so much better than here that you can't really be bothered to hear what they decide to come out with.
6. "Grand Royale"
As DJ Premier steps up to collaborate with them on this one, you can't help to think that it must mean that they are going to come with something amazing, but really this isn't the case at all as you find N.O.R.E. wasting time talking about how they are back (how many times do we need reminding), and with this he just references how far media has progressed since their last effort. Primo really doesn't do much more than any other time, so there's not much to enjoy really.
7. "The Argument"
On this one you have a track which has a good structure to it as t has it set up as an argument between the two, and finds them doing raps which has them speaking about the tings which really annoy each one about the other. T allows you in to find out more about them, but it's no that musical at all.
This one finds them doing a track which deals with their progression in what they use dto get up to in order to get their hustle up, and how things have allowed them to go about this in a completely different way. Really, it's all been heard before, and offers little to listeners, whether you are a fan or not.
You have another big nineties (mainly) Hip hop crew out of the East Coast coming to work with this two and they choose to use Mobb Deep in this one to go for a club track. I didn't expect them to do things this way, but it offered an escape for a short while to lift it a bit before we are forced back to their plain rap.
10. "Channel 10"
The eponymous track to the album has them performing even more of the lifeless rap which you got at the other parts of the release, and as it is the titular one, you expect a lot more from it, so it just does more to bring it down (due to the expectations). They continue to try to hold on to the success of the past, but it's just not flying here.
StreetRunner, one of the biggest underground Hip Hop producers finds himself ere attempting to bring something out of the little which the two have to offer with this album, and really this one just uncovers how far from the current trends they are as they spend time trying to pick at all newcomers, and not enough showing that they can actually deliver here.
12. "My Life"
The hook which N.O.R.E. comes with on this one is just as unimaginative as the one on "Time To Talk Big", and I really don't know how they could allow the simple repetition of the title pass for the chorus. From here is more of what as been seen before with raps of how they did all the hard work to allow people in the game, and other things which you would expect from an act who assume "O.G." status just for having an album both from back in the day and in current times too.
13. "Stick Up"
You have them trying to pass more of their past material in today's style, and really it just isn't happening as they go to some Mafioso Rap, and this phased out for the simple reason that this kind of culture cannot persist in an age where security is so tight, and so no listeners today can relate to what is said, and see it s farfetched.
14. "My Hood"
To show that there is love between them and the West Coast (since their LA, LA" track response to Tha Dogg Pound's "New York., New York" was seen as one of the reasons why the East Coast/West coast rivalry became what it was in the mid-nineties) DPG are amongst a few who come to collaborate with them here. The presence of this pair, Clipse, Maino and Uncle Murder all boost it, but it's nothing that special at all.
15. "Follow The Dollar"
The grungy beats from The Alchemist in this one are heavy and they dramatically bring the quality back up after so many weak one. With Dilated Peoples' beat maker they are finally able to get something good out of the album after a fair drought between tunes (the last being "Rotate"). I feel that as this was an early leak, having heard it much more meant it stood out, but I won't take this away from it as it is a strong one from them.
16. "You See Me"
The Inkredibles come here once again for another track, and I have to say that it was just as pathetic as the earlier one with them. There's just nothing going on here, and despite having some empowering beats, they don't o anything with it, and instead track how they have been forced to come back after getting to a state common with those who have seen stardom, and not felt that they need to put in effort following such a stint.
Finally bring the album to an end, you have them do a track which has them explain their various addictions, none of which are too promising to an act who are on their way out (or at least should be). N.O.R.E. refers to himself to a legend early on in this, and hat just made me bring things to a close, he simply isn't and should claim to be.
Really there are only two songs on this album worth listening to, and the rest of it is just terrible. Most of the tunes have N.O.R.E. construct the most irritating hook you will hear on any album, and it means that it spoils the rest of the thing, as only lifts come with good beats and a producer willing to step in for those parts.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
2 United We Stand
3 Rotate (Feat - Busta Rhymes & Ron Browz)
4 Talk To Me Big Time
5 Bring It Here
6 On The Microphone
7 The Argument
9 Wobble (Feat - Mobb Deep)
10 Channel 10
12 My Life
13 Stick Up
14 My Hood (Feat - Clipse, Tha Dogg Pound, Uncle Murda
15 Follow The Dollar
16 You See Me!!!!