Don't Feed Da Animals

by: Gorilla Zoe

With his coarse voice and claim to be "A-Town's Hannibal," rapper Gorilla Zoe came on the scene as a fine alternative to Rick Ross. His breakthrough single, the thug anthem "Hood N****," made perfect sense, but then a guest shot on Yung Joc's quirky hit "Coffee Shop" seems to have knocked something loose. At its best, his sophomore release Don't Feed Da Animals is a bold, "Coffee Shop"-inspired attempt to try something different within the realm of gangsta rap. At its worst, it's redundant, or more likely, cringe-worthy. While "Hood Clap" and the handful of other attempts to re-create "Hood N****" are easy enough to ignore, it is tracks like "S*** on 'Em" that really hurt with their "I doo-doo/I pooh pooh/I s*** on 'em" choruses. Elsewhere "They give me no answers/Following the wise/But they're walking in Pampers" drags down "Lost," a heartfelt song about loneliness that would work splendidly if it wasn't for the diaper talk. Things heat up in the second half as "Man I" does the Mike Jones and "Back Then" thing in style. Then there are the three Drumma Boy productions, two of which -- "I Got It" and "Watch Me" -- are the usual club crushers, hook-filled and infectious as always. It's their third collaboration, the ambitious, Akon-sized closer "Echo," that really satisfies and makes the listener wish the previous set of admirable but flawed tracks had been given one more rewrite, preferably with fewer references to doo-doo and pooh. ~ David Jeffries

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