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No Average Jo

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Album Review

Imagine an Eminem or Atmosphere who wasn't in need of therapy or a Fort Minor who wrote songs about partying when the parents aren't home and you've got PJo, a scrappy young suburbanite who brings his own spin to the "white rapper" thing. PJo is No Average Jo because he is so Everyman, or maybe more like everyteen, and anxious to rap about taking in weekends at Lake Michigan, smokin' a little dro, cussing just a bit, and cranking out beats on the computer while fretting about the usual "nobody understands me" problems without going entirely emo. The way he asks his peeps to "stop frontin'" on the highlight "You're Better Real" is to give them plenty of reasons they wouldn't make it in the inner city, something driven home by guest singer Colleen Barry who acts as a stern Dido during the chorus. "You'll never gonna see through their eyes" she declares and PJo never tries, as he openly admits his suburban viewpoint throughout the album. Nerdcore rappers do the same thing, but PJo doesn't belong to that smirking, ironic school. In fact, he doesn't belong to any school, and if there's anything ironic about No Average Jo it's that telling it like it is for the polos, khakis, lake house, and fimo clay pipe shaped like a South Park character set leaves you with no built-in audience, no matter how many hooks or good lyrics you bring. That PJo doesn't mind much just adds to his charm.

No Average Jo, PJO
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