The Score: Young Jeezy, "TM103: Hustler's Ambition"

Tuesday, Dec 20, 2011 3:00PM

Written by J. Bachelor

Buy Now
  • TM 103: Hustler's Ambition
  • Young Jeezy
  • December 20, 2011
Technorati 3/5
Spin 7/10
As Is Hip Hop 2/5
We Are Rap 3.5/5
All Hip Hop 9/10

The real is back. After having fans wait several years for a new retail project, Southern rap heavyweight Young Jeezy has returned to the scene, hoping to reclaim his spot as one of the slickest dope boys to hold the mic.

The latest and final installment of the Thug Motivation series, TM103: Hustler's Ambition crash lands into stores just in time to close out 2011.
It's been three years since Jeezy has dropped a new solo studio album, but he's been far from quiet. With numerous mixtapes and collaborations, he's never really disappeared from the hip hop scene at any point during that period. While the quality of the music that he has been releasing hasn't necessarily been consistent, he's given fans plenty of reasons to make TM103: Hustlers Ambition one of the most anticipated albums of 2011. The real question is, where will this one fit in Jeezy's pretty impressive (though not too diverse) catalog?(The Beat Goes On)

Jeezy called in the some of the industry's biggest names to magnify the motivation. Guest appearances include T.I., Snoop Dogg, Andre 3000 and Jay-Z, just to name a few.

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.(LA Times)

As expected from a Jeezy disc, the album is filled with epic-sounding tracks courtesy of producers such as Drumma Boy, Lil Lody and the J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League.

Anyone familiar with any of Atlanta trap-rap icon Young Jeezy's prior Def Jam albums, starting with 2005's Let's Get It: Thug Motivation 101, knows how this goes: The lyrics are largely ballsy statements about how "the Snowman" once shifted copious quantities of white powder on the streets, and now enjoys a luxurious lifestyle as a result. The beats flit between sparse, 808-heavy, synth-assisted productions -- typified here by Drumma Boy's "What I Do (Just Like That)" and several tracks from Lil Lody -- and occasionally more fleshed-out moments, the most persuasive this time being the J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League's "Trapped" and "F.A.M.E.", the latter co-starring an out-of-the-chokey T.I. Still, there's a hint more depth to the project when Jeezy starts to embrace something close to a 2Pac martyr persona.(Spin)

In early 2010, The Snowman explained why he picked Florida rapper Plies for the single, "Lose My Mind."

"To keep it all the way 100 with you, we did a record called 'So Sad,' " Jeezy said about how he got with Plies. "Before I could put it out, the record leaked, so we was good on that. Then I was gonna do a record for him [for his album]. I did the record, by the way, but I had 'Lose My Mind.' I done three verses. I listened to it a couple of times. I said, 'Let me try something. I'mma put somebody on the record.' I was doing a joint for him at the time and happened to see him. We was doing something for [NBA] All-Star [Weekend]. I was like, 'Yo, I'mma get you this record, see if you like it.' He sent it right back. I went with it. Just to warm up the streets, let them know I'm coming." Young said his album will drop sometime in June. And, of course, we'll get his mixtape, Trap or Die 2 with DJ Drama, sometime before that.(MTV)

While critics agree that this may not be Jeezy's greatest album, the impressive production, laundry-list of guest features and the unique sound only Jeezy can deliver make it an album worth more than a few spins.

The fact Jeezy has been gone for a couple of years helped to build the expectations for this album. The Recession was a good album for Jeezy and though it was uneven, it showed progress in both actual skill and topics for the snowman. Here, on TM103, Jeezy steps back and attempts to add some 'swag' rap to his hustler talk and the results are less than stellar. Too many of the beats are pretty much the same and the hooks are either just boring and unimaginative, or way too deep for the simplistic verses and that's the worst part. After all, no one is expecting Jeezy to suddenly become TI never mind turning into Nas but when I have to wonder if he or 2 Chainz is the worst on a song it doesn't bode very well.(As Is Hip Hop)
This was a great album and certainly passed a lot of people's expectations. Great production , Excellent features and really only had 3-4 sub-par tracks. It's certainly going to have a few more spins in my cd player, I also recommend going out and buying it on 20th of December because it's simply worth it. I don't know what they're doing with the Eminem track but it's believed to be a bonus or on the Deluxe Edition.(We Are Rap)

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