Crooked I – Apex Predator
One of the purest spitters in the game, Crooked I is back with his debut studio album. The Long Beach, California emcee brings his raw, unfiltered flow and stinging bars to the center with eleven tracks. Crook has successfully made the transformation from artist to boss seamlessly and the accomplishment and acclaim of dropping his first LP is long overdue.
Here are the SOHH.com 5 Reasons to download Apex Predator.
1. Long Road Traveled
Crooked I is a bonafide veteran with official credentials in his long career. He has spent nearly two decades in the game and has had deals with Noo Trybe/Virgin Records and Death Row Records. The highly respected emcee has grustled hard to achieve mainstream prosperity, most recently as a member of super rap group Slaughterhouse alongside other talented artists Royce Da 5’9, Joel Ortiz and Joe Budden. The group is signed to Eminem’s Shady Records which is distributed through Interscope Records. Having a popular platform like that has exposed Crook to the world in a bigger way. Being around a gifted circle has to make an artist perform at the highest level possible and Crook shows and proves he has elevated his game with the vicious Apex Predator release.
2. COB Certified
Crook has put the work in to become successful not just as an artist but a boss as well. As CEO of his own Circle Of Bosses label, Crook has the opportunity to make his own decisions regarding not only his career but for other artists as well. ConiYac, the Horseshoe G.A.N.G. team and Sauce Tha Boss are all official members of the organization. Crook is also the Senior Vice President of West Coast based indie Treacherous Records. Apex Predator is released through Treacherous C.O.B. and Empire Distribution.
The first video released from Apex Predator is the hard hitting “YODO (You Only Die Once)”. It’s the opposite from the acronym Drake made popular with “YOLO”. “YODO” however has a deeper meaning. Each verse describes confrontational moments in which Crooked breaks down life altering situations by way of his bars. The conditions Crooked I drops in the verses could be common situations that happen on a regular basis. Point is, be careful about how you carry yourself, what you brag about and your surroundings at all times. Verse two describes the scene of a dude in a strip club that has been set up.
“Now you poppin’ rubber bands talkin’ bout you got it all/
Flexin’ for the strippers, one is sendin’ out a call/
Some n*gg*s slide up on you, quietly pull it out and draw/
Walk you into the bathroom, surround you by the stall/
One watch the door, other goin’ in your pocket/
One snatchin’ your jewels, ain’t sh*t you can do to stop it/
Thinkin’ bout swingin’ on the n*gga, n*gga stop it/
You robbed by some pros, that stripper ho gon’ get a profit” – Crooked I
4. Line For Line
Crooked I is a emcee’s emcee. Someone who raises the standards with his wordplay, lyrics and outstanding metaphors. Apex Predator highlights those skills to the fullest. The lines he drops on songs like “Crook N Porter” produced by Mr. Porter has no hook and listeners won’t even miss it. Crooked I has the rare ability to just black out on a beat and fully keep your attention. The intense production features a amped up Crook and a vocal sample from none other than DMX to add to the frenzy. With bars like “I do this while I’m chillin’ with the cousin of death – Think I’m from Wu-Tang how I’m f*ckin’ with Meth“, fans will have to run this back a few times to catch all the cleverness. Other standouts on the LP include the autobiographical “Sumthin From Nuthin”, and the candid “A Lady Fell In Love”.
With the only rap feature on the album, Tech N9ne does his thing on “Let Me Get It”. Other appearances include singers K-Young and Tena Jones. Producers on the LP include Johnathan Elkaer, Snaz, Luxe Beats, StreetRunner, Sarom, Tabu, Cardo and Mr. Porter.