Author

Laura Jamison

He’s had one of the longest careers in rap’s short history, and now, at the top of his game, gangsta rapper Too Short claims he’s retiring. The swan-song album Gettin’ It features the same heavy beats and unimaginative bitch-filled rhymes that have rocked car stereos for years. ”Buy You Some,” a booming track with Long Islander Erick Sermon, is a successful, much-appreciated departure. B-

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The tracks on Jody Watley: Greatest Hits won’t boggle the mind with their depth, but this compilation reminds us why Watley once seemed poised to be a pop queen. ”Looking for a New Love” (1987) and ”Real Love” (1989) still bounce, and funky remixes of ”Ecstasy” and ”Some Kind of Lover” work so well they may make her a dance-hall diva yet.

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Few, outside of the (surprisingly large) Christian hip-hop audience, have heard of this platinum trio. But Jesus Freak — with influences ranging from P.M. Dawn to Nirvana — may lead them out of the God Ghetto. It successfully, if derivatively, combines textured vocals, aggressive guitar, and solid songwriting, especially on ”Colored People” and the raucous title track. B+

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