Ace Hood’s constant hustle and devotion to his craft is commendable. Even though the Florida rapper is signed to the one of the biggest record labels in the game, Ace continues to work hard and build his brand beyond his DJ Khaled affiliation. His latest mixtape, The Starvation 2, continues the rapper’s knack for trunk rattling beats and memorable flows. This piece of hood music floods the streets with a hefty track listing of 20 bangers.
The beats on this tape flow together quite nicely with Ace’s rugged flow. The usual suspects (Young Chop, Jahlil Beats, Cardiak etc.) lend their familiar sound to the project. “Root of Evil (Intro)” starts the tape off with Chop’s bass heavy sound, which fits Ace accordingly. Ace speaks on the usual topics we’re used to hearing from him – getting paper, stunting at the club, picking up loose women and speaking on rappers who stole his flow. Ace also hops on a low-tempo Jahlil Beats track and gives his insight into a female’s motivation (money) on “Motive”, then elaborates on his grind over the Cardiak produced “Trailer.” All these songs are as hard and enjoyable as they come.
The featured rappers who make a cameo alongside Ace also fit his flow and subject matter well. Meek Mill and Ace sound like long lost twin brothers over the slick talk record, “Goin Down.” Plies contributes a surprisingly respectable verse on the club anthem, “Got Damn.” And French Montana gets his Autotune on over Ace’s ode to stacking dough and ignoring the haters on “F**k Em All.” All three of these songs succeed, thanks to these dope guest contributions and Ace’s always solid verses.
This mixtape really shines when Ace delves into more thought provoking topics. “F**k Da World” is a powerful track that has Ace reflecting on the many ills of our current society. It’s refreshing to hear Ace go in on the mass shootings and crooked politics that others have sadly grown accustomed to. The tale of a struggling inner-city youngster translates well to the storytelling aspects of another great track (“Lil’ N***a”). Ace takes his listeners on a visual ride that paints a perfect picture of ghetto youth.
Even though some of these songs rest on a tired formula (“M.O.B.”, “Take Yo B***h” and “On Right Now” are good examples of wasteful songs), the finished product is still a good listen for any interested rap/hip-hop fan. For the most part, Ace Hood’s current shine should grow even brighter from this mixtape.
With DJ Khaled in his corner, Ace Hood is poised to make even more headway to the top spot in the rap game. His flow is all his, so it’s about time his flow biters pay homage to Mr. “Hustle Hard.”
The Starvation 2 is the type of musical sequel my ears have been waiting for.