"Trap Muzik" is the second album from the Atlanta rapper T.I., and it was released in Summer 2003. Although the artists had only come about in about two years, this album managed to reach #4 in the American Billboard charts and sell over a million; thus reaching platinum.
1. "Trap Muzik" (Feat. Mac Boney)
This track acts as a great introduction to the album as it sets the scene for the LP and tells you what you will hear. You are given indication that the record will feature tales from the trap (the hood), and all that comes with this. I wouldn't really consider this as a single because it replaces a generic bit of speech at the start of the album to tell you what's happened since the lasy one etc.
2. "I Can't Quit
Apparent from the title, this one is a track in which T.I., real name Clifford Harris, justifies remaining a part of the music industry. Considering this is from two years into his career, I felt it was strange that he was talking about retirement this early on , but as you hear he had been pressured by others around him, you can understand where it came from.
T.I. claims that he had too mcuh of a taste of fame to hang up the mic(rophone) this early as if you do it this soon he wouldn't be able to live his life well again without a high profile which he has. Looking back, I wouldn't have said that he would have been living that well in 2003; who am I to argue.
3. "Be Easy"
This is the second single from the album and it was produced by the DJ who is now known as the producer for T.I., DJ Toomp, and this is no surprise when you hear track such as this which use such inventive variations on the Dirty South style of Hip hop music.
You hear T.I. say that he plays the piano in this track, but it says nothing in the LP, to indicate that he is actually able to play it, and I doubt he actually, did, but this doesn't lessen the amount I liked this track.
4. "No More Talk"
This track features an old Jackson 5 groove that has been used in a few Hip Hop tracks in the past. I feel that the sample makes the track as good as it sets up the mood for the track which is quite sombre when you consider the subject.
T.I. comes out by saying that me want to put an end to all of the rappers who are all about talking about their money and what they do with it, because they should be focussing their attention on more important issues which face the black community and are preventing them from striving in this world.
5. "Doin' My Job"
This track was an early one to be produced by a rapper who was just about to explode to successat the time, Kanye West, and you can hear his distinctive style of creating hooks shine through with the chipmonk technique which he made famous. He did this by taking an old school soul groove and increasing the pitch to create a suitable hook.
T.I. justifies his actions which gothim the big scrilla money) prior to his music, selling drugs, but to be honest, you cannot give a good enough reason for this, but T.I.'s charm forces you to see it his way and accept it as a good form of getting an income.
6. "Let's Get Away"
this was the final track to be released as a single and it's a tune which Jazzy Pha took part in producing. The producer worked on his first album, but thenI didn't like what he did, but I preferred what I heard in this album from him. I was also alarmed when I read that he featured in this track vocally too, but this is just a couple of words to end the song off, which was good, because I hate the sound of his voice. T.I. talks about dating girls all around the world for this one, and the the style in which he does it is nice, but not all that original.
This was the first track from the album and it displayed a change in T.I.'s style from his debut album, "I'm Serious". This time, on a hard Toomp beat, T.I. talks about how he has to make the most of the success which he is receiving , bcause he knows that he doens't want to go back to his risky old life of seeling drugs on the streets of Bankhead, Atlanta, Georgia.
T.I. essential lists all the things he has bought since his struggle out of the ghetto where he is able to now relax and not feel threatened by his potentially dangerous surroundings. This track may have gained interantional atteention for the rapper as it appeared on "Need For Speed Underground", one of the biggest games from the year.
8. "Rubberband Man"
This is one of the two best tracks on this album, but the best display of how T.I. has managed to make the most out of his shady past selling drugs, and transformed it into some amazing music.
The David Banner's production is one of the things which makes it so good as an ascending organ riff, sounding like a thing you would here at an American football or Baseball game, is utilised. On top of this T.I. brings fire as he talks in a joyous way about slinging crack with his 9mm and .45 at hand. it seems strange that he would do it this way, but as he's out of the system now he can have fun with his past.
9. "Look What I Got"
When you hear what you consider to be a true T.I. tune, as this one, it's because the whole package is given to it, and I felt that this came across as T.I.'s right-hand man, DJ Toomp, does the production for this track and he offer a strogn beat for the rapper to work on with a clear Dirty South sound with heavy bass and horns.
T.I. brings attention to his car collection, vast number of residencies and other things which make the average man jealous. You can't argue with him for doing it, because when you getting mega backs like that, your lifestyle changes so drastically that you can't help but express it in any way possible, his form of expresion being music (obvioulsy).
10. "I Still Luv You"
This track is a lot softer than most of the record, and I fel that it's because he's addressing his "shawty" in this one, so he doesn't want to make this reassuring song seem patronising in any way, because f it was, it wouldn't give out the same impression, and it would be takeing the mick. So I felt that T.I. dealt with it delicately and sensitively
11. "Let Me Tell You Something"
Something which immediately hit me with this one is that Kanye's production used the vocoder technique which is used in the old '90s way whaich can be heard in the remix to 2Pac's "California Love" and in BLACKstreet songs of the decade,(opposed to how T-Pain uses it now), and I felt that that the mood of this period was picked up straight away, and it reminded me so much of music in about '96, not that I should remember it that well as I was only five, but these were my favourite musical years.
12. "T.I. VS. T.I.P."
This is ag reat track as it refers to T.I.'s struggle within himself to bring out his better side, the track has the artist swinging between his two personalities, you T.I., the softer side to him, then T.I.P., his older times which use his old mindset when he had to bring a hard front when he was on the streets getting his paper up.
This is a very interesting one, especially if you listen to his newer work as "T.I. VS. T.I.P.", was the name of his most recent album. This is the first time where you see the artist attempting to find out who he is as he argues with himself, and you can tell by a slight chnge in his acceent where the tougher side of him is almost too strong for outsiders to understand.
13. "Bezzle" (Feat. 8Ball & MJG and Bun B)
I thought that this was one of the best tracks on the album because it is a trill Dirty South track which has an early 90sl sound, this is probably due to the fact that three of the most well-known legendary Dirty South rappers appear on this track with T.I..
The Toomp production addds to overall power which this track ha, really nothing can stop it. I seriously want to know why this asn't considered for a single, because it is an amazing track with the all-stars of the Dirty South alongside the newcomer, T.I., who now could be better off than these legends, who are still going strong.
This track probably captures the point where he claims his titlte of the 'King of The South', which has stuck with him ever since, obviously encouraging others to compete for this role, but I think he's the most worthy solo act from the Dirty (South) to have this given to them. T.I. just explains why he deserves to take this over other people in the area by describing his early struggles to his current success.
15. "Be Better Than Me"
Here is an inspirational tune from the Atlanta rapper and it was produced by Sanchez Holmes, who also did "Kingofdasouth", "No More Talk" and "Long Live Da Game", so you can't argue that T.I. likes his style of beats, and I felt they very nice too.
T.I. tells everybody in the young black community to realise that they have an opportunity to make something good out of their lives as he missed out, and by chance he managed to succeed in the music industry, so they should stop tryin to get into the drug industry, because he knows that although it seems like the best option, this will be short-lived.
I found that aside from the main singles, "24's", "Be Easy", and "Rubberband Man", there wasn't much else in this album, apart from "Bezzle", but if you like T.I.'s newer albums, then you should see where he has come from. On the whole this was a very good album and it shows exactly what the artist is about. A lot of it is much harder than most of the material he comes with today, but I prefer him like this.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Trap Muzik
2 I Can't Quit
3 Be Easy
4 No More Talk
5 Doin' My Job
6 Let's Get Away
8 Rubber Band Man
9 Look What I Got
10 I Still Luv You
11 Let Me Tell You Something
12 T.I. vs. T.I.P.
13 Bezzle - Bun B, 8Ball, MJG, T.I.
15 Be Better Than Me
16 Long Live da Game