Fat Joe

The Elephant in the Room | Terror Squad
By BEN WESTHOFF  |  April 2, 2008
2.5 2.5 Stars
For a 15-year rap veteran who brought the world the late Big Pun and has penned a long string of hits, Fat Joe sure has an inferiority complex. As the title of his eighth solo album indicates, he doesn’t believe he’s getting his due, and so he tells us, repeatedly and unconvincingly, how rich and cool he is: he’s distributing cocaine and its derivatives (“That White”), having affairs with honies on the down low (“I Won’t Tell”), and viciously slaughtering those who cross him (“K.A.R.”). What makes it work is his vulnerability, a rare commodity in hip-hop. Unlike associate Rick Ross, who keeps letting you know that he’s the “boss,” Joe just wants to entertain you, and with the help of some muscular production from DJ Premier, Cool & Dre, and Danja, he mostly does.
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