The Score: Yelawolf, "Radioactive"

Tuesday, Nov 22, 2011 1:35PM

Written by J. Bachelor

THE SCORE
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  • Radioactive
  • Yelawolf
  • November 22, 2011
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All Hip Hop 6/10
FSU News 4.5/5
Planet Ill 2.75/5
Hip Hop Dx 4.26/5

Shady 2.0 signee Yelawolf howls his way into retail stores as his album, Radioactive, releases today.

Radioactive is Yelawolf's first release under the Shady Records imprint.

Although Yelawolf has been buzzing in the South since the release of his critically acclaimed Trunk Muzik mixtape (which has since been rereleased on Interscope Records as Trunk Muzik: 0-60), he didn't capture the attention of most of the U.S. until his show - stealing Cyphers in consecutive years at the BET Hip Hop Awards. Combine that with his union with Eminem and Slaughterhouse, and Yelawolf suddenly has one of the most hyped releases this 4th quarter. With Radioactive, his official first offering from his Shady Records release, Yelawolf seems to be aiming more so for the crossover appeal than the normal trunk-rattling songs that he's known for.(All Hip Hop)

Yela keeps Radioactive sparking with guest appearances from Eminem, Killer Mike, Mystikal and more.

First, can we talk about how dope the album artwork is on this thing? I don't remember the last time a hip-hop record looked so good. Thankfully, the music more than warrants the album's looks. Appearances from Eminem, Killer Mike and Lil' Jon boost Yela's credibility while WillPower, Diplo, J.U.S.T.I.C.E League and Jim Jonsin works their magic on the production end. Consider this one of the best albums of the year.(FSU News)

Wolf enlisted a slew of beat chemists to help capture Radioactive's explosive sound.

Radioactive is Yelawolf's first album after the partnering of Ghet-O-Vision Entertainment and the Eminem-led Shady Records. The album, which finds Yelawolf working with such producers as SupaHotBeats, Justice League, The Audibles, and Diplo, follows Yelawolf's critically acclaimed Trunk Muzik 0-60 (Ghet-O-Vision/DGC/Interscope) -- a 2010 compilation of tracks from his Trunk Muzik mixtape along with previously unavailable recordings.(Yelawolf.com)

Earlier this year, Yelawolf said he wants no parts of a a battle with Eminem, who appears alongside him on the track "Throw It Up".

The unassuming southern rapper, who possesses one of the more blistering flows in the game, humbly bowed down to his new boss Eminem. "I'd say Marshall is definitely at the top of the list," agreed Yela. "Cyhi Da Prince is metaphorically the illest dude out right now in my opinion. Just the way that he can flip words, he'll just tear you apart." Yela confessed during the interview that battling wasn't his forte such as it was for Em in his younger days coming up in Detroit. Hailing from the small town of Gadsden in Alabama, the opportunity for head to head competition for Yela was scarce. "Where I grew up, there was never a battle scene," shared Yelawolf. "I never got to exercise that because frankly it'll get you beat up in Gadsden." Yela added, "There was never no scene, no ciphers, no real scene to get in. So I'm not really equipped in that arena anyway." Yela wrapped up his answers succinctly by saying "I definitely wouldn't want it with Marshall or [Cyhi Da] Prince. Nobody does."(RapFix)

Critics agree that although Radioactive is a decent effort, it still doesn't showcase all that Alabama spitter Yelawolf has to offer.

The lyrics remain sharp and original, though his rapping abilities sometimes feel unchallenged and safe. All the elements are present; it's just a matter of recognizing the diamond from the rock and staying true to the elements that got Yelawolf to where he is today. His single "Hard White" is a clear example of his identity and sound, it is unfortunate that he does not preserve the streamlined vision throughout the whole album.(The Daily Californian)
Radioactive presents an interesting dichotomy with mainstream pandering living alongside hard-edged music. Yela's emceeing doesn't falter as much as his song construction does, but it's within the structure that albums are made or broken. There's enough good material here to make the album listenable, but not enough to make it great.(Planet Ill)

To purchase Radioactive, just click here.

Preview the album below:

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