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Album review: Young Jeezy's 'TM:103 Hustlerz Ambition'

December 19, 2011 |  7:36 pm

Album review: Young Jeezy's 'TM:103 Hustlerz Ambition'

Fury flies from the first bells of the 34-year-old’s fourth Def Jam full length. “You know the world is waiting … on 103,”Jeezy croaks in his trademark double-barrel rasp. A lot’s changed in the three years since his last effort, “The Recession.” Jeezy’s rivals Gucci Mane and Rick Ross captured the popular imagination, while commercial rap’s aesthetic gravitated ever increasingly to 4/4 techno.

Still, “TM 103” is almost refreshingly reverent. Even his for-the-ladies concessions (“Superfreak,” “All We Do,” “Leave You Alone”) boast the punishing maximalism that made Jeezy a heavyweight. What he sacrifices in innovation he compensates for with focus and precision. His ad-libs and punch-ins still slap with ominous Old Testament brutality. 

Wisely, he enlists an array of guest superstars (T.I., Jay-Z, Andre 3000, Lil Wayne, Snoop Dogg) to add vibrancy to his primary color palette and earns brownie points for bringing back Devin the Dude (“Higher Learning”) and Trick Daddy (“This One’s for You.”) Don’t call it a comeback; he’s been feared for years.

Young Jeezy
“TM:103 Hustlerz Ambition”
(Def Jam)
Three stars (Out of four) 

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—Jeff Weiss

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