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Money Waters

Swalhaggin

Money Waters is a natural storyteller -- you don't wanna stop him, even if you've already heard it. The rapper, from the Pleasant Grove area just outside Dallas, is strongest when he and his homeboys are venting their Everyman tales of frustration about nagging wives and big-talking friends. ("Fightin' and Gripin'" hilariously details his aggravation with a homeboy who's letting a woman get in the way of chilling with his friends.)

But after going to the Millions More Movement last year, Waters felt the need to speak on racial issues. Swalhaggin (read it backward -- silently if you're white) starts with the righteously angry "Fuckery." His disgust with racism past and present calls for revolution -- We've been hypnotized / The black man needs a good back hand just to slap out that shit and realize / That we're the sleeping giant... -- and demonstrates his dynamic flow, with internal rhymes, attention-grabbing pauses and a conversational rhythm rolling and bouncing over his lyrics. Elsewhere, he warns a friend about the dope game in "Be Careful" and bemoans the "Eva Changin'" world. And he lets guest Uncle Pauly lay down the law in the spiritual centerpiece of the album, "Niggallegiance," which comes off as a slightly preachy pep talk to black men, even if it offers no solutions. Money's mixture of blues and rap won't redefine either genre, but the combo is a powerful musical statement. The rich Rummsquad production is a nice change from minimalist Dirty South beats -- melodic blues bass, funk drumbeats and wah-wah guitar riffs from Kerav Shimon complement Waters's syrupy Texissippi drawl. Money wants a revolution, but he'll settle for some 'dro and a break from the bullshit.

 
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