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Album Review

After gaining a sizable audience with his debut album, Gutta, Ace Hood returned just seven months later with a more polished follow-up, the mistitled Ruthless. For those desiring the more radio-friendly side of the gruff rapper, the album offers plenty of bedroom numbers and club tracks along with a big list of superstar guests, including Akon, Lloyd, Rick Ross, and T-Pain. For everyone else, this is too much too soon and awfully inconsistent, with some swagger numbers succeeding splendidly (the highly infectious "Loco with the Cake" or maybe "Born an OG," with Ludacris in full party mode) while others just fail (the bland "Champion"). To his credit, Hood dominates "Overtime" even with Akon and T-Pain as guests, and on the closing "Make a Toast" he brings the guts, sounding like the unforgiving victor he was on Gutta. If the sound quality were rougher and the attitude looser, this would come off as one of those mixtapes where collabos and lesser tracks pacify the faithful in between official albums. The casual listener should just check the hits.


Born: 11 May 1988 in Port St. Lucie, FL

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Born Antoine McColister in Port St. Lucie, Florida, Ace Hood was raised by his mother in Deerfield Beach, 20 miles north of Miami. Rap music became his full-time obsession after he suffered a football injury in the tenth grade, effectively putting the kibosh on a professional sports career. By age 17, he was recording tracks for local imprint Dollaz & Dealz and had a few street singles put out, including 2006's "M.O.E." (i.e., "Money Over Everything"). In November of the following year, Ace maneuvered...
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