Atlanta's Rocko made his debut in 2008 when he released "Self-Made" as his first album. The artist came seemingly form nowhere when "Umma Do Me" dropped as his debut single and he quickly followed it up with this Cool &Dre, J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League and Drumma Boy-assisted record.
1. "Dis Morning" (Intro)
2. "Umma Do Me"
This was the track on the album which made the most noise, and it finds that the artists comes out with a pretty fresh one in which he shows that he's really down for the sound of the times with a track which was constructed specifically to capitalise upon what was popular at the time, and in spite of the fact the general sound is hot, the raps are too simplistic for anyone to really rate his rhymes at all.
3. "Hustle Fo"
He his helped out in this one by another Atlanta name as here you find that Lloyd (one of A-Town best R&B talents) comes to provide his great vocals on top of this one as Rock Da Don performs one where he does things in a very general manner which reflects the type of raps which you would get from al of the Atlanta rappers who are popular but don't really have any skills (such as Gucci mane, Shawty Lo and OJ Da Juiceman).
Here as you find that Drumma Boy jumps on the beats for the first time on the album he throws on some beats which sound to be a very typical wok which he could have quickly thrown together for someone such as Young Jeezy as it is fly and heavy on the bass, but I felt that the potential of this was lots in the listing of the rapper who just lost all the energy of the thing.
You get more from Drumma Boy here, and here it appeared that he went for something which sounded a little different and more diverse than what he tends to come with and so it acted as a booster to the music as he chooses to direct the music towards the clubs, and it appeared that the artist was able to come out with something greatly improved as a results as his essential 'Pop' flows were perfectly in line with what the rest of the thing was saying.
6. "Old Skool"
With that title, I thought that we would be in for a bit of a challenge for the artist as his style is so much in line with the current Dirty South sound that he wouldn't be able to connect with the past, but in fact he actually chose to do one about the types of cars he enjoys. It stands in-line with what you expect to get from such an act, but wasn't actually saying anything at all.
As FATBOI jumps on the production, you here that there is a degree of shift in the way that the music is done as we get fro Drumma Boy towards another established name in the southern rap game behind him, and he comes up with something appropriate with a track which supports what A-Town's sound in early '08 was about (but unfortunately the artist couldn't use it that well with his poor swag on the mic(rophone).
8. "Like This Here"
This is quite clearly a turning-point in the music as you see that the way that the producer misses out a lot of typical techniques out of his composition shows that he hopes to portray different things in the tune, but it appeared that the artist couldn't really move things on in any way whatsoever as it stays in the same mode in what which take son an identical format as in his lead single.
9. "That's My Money"
The Runners are behind this one and it sounds to take the music towards the kind of commercial style as the way that it is done has it taking on the kind of format which fits in with the sort of things which excel as representatives of the release with one having an R&B chorus (sung here by KC) backing up the main rapping artist.
10. "She Can Get It"
Cool & Dre are the producer who constructed this one, and so you see that just as with the one prior to it, the music turns into the mainstream kind of sound and away from the more hardcore Gangsta Rap stuff which still has popular appeal by performing one which just stays with the plain sound of the times and gets him showing how well he can work the Rock-influenced production for a seductive tune.
Drumma Boy returns here and I felt that it brought a degree of comfort to the music as his style seems to fit much more in with what Rocko is capable of. From here you see that unfortunately the rapper chooses to try out something new (after recovering the support of some familiar beats) to have a go at story-telling, and really you knew that form the get-go it was going to fall apart as he just lists event and makes no attempts to engage the listener with the actual recording.
The content of this one appears to be something which I wouldn't tend to associate with this specific 20007/2008 period for southern Hip Hop in which there were many artists on the come-up talking of how they were just trying to eat, and so here he uses this metaphor and extends it through his music in order to relate it to his 'struggle' and give this as an explanation as to why people should support his material.
13. "Thugs Need Love Too"
He gets more local R&B talent with Monica coming to do her thing for this one and in order to have him show his potential whilst attempting to come with the darker work (which appeared to have started to come through a couple of tunes prior to this point) to talk of how he does have downs, and he (just as others) needs support in the difficult times. It is plain, and brings out no emotional response whatsoever.
Bringing the album to a close you see that he gets to work with the Florida-based J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League and with this he is able to do some of the 'gutta' rap in which he can take things towards the much colder rhymes where he can talk about the kinds of activities which he has got into over the years, and how these have shaped the way he performs. It is clichéd Rap and has nothing more to offer.
This album is a pretty weak one, and it doesn't rally offer that much in the way off lifts as it all stayed on the same sort of level. For this reason, you could argue that it is a fairly consistent record, but with the rhymes too poor to get anyone interested, there's not much point. It wouldn't surprise me if the artist remained as a one-hit-wonder) and one not to have even broke out popularity in countries elsewhere).
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Dis Morning
2 Umma Do Me
3 Hustle Fo - Lloyd, Rocko
6 Old Skool
8 Like This Here
9 That's My Money
10 She Can Get It
13 Thugs Need Love Too - Monica, Rocko