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Album Review

When Eve debuted in 1999, she surprised many as one of the few female rappers capable of attaining both popularity and respect without having to take on a sleazy role or sacrifice any of her muscle. In fact, her muscle seemed to be what impressed the rap community most. If anything, Eve brings even more muscle to her follow-up album, Scorpion. Her rhymes flow just as smoothly here as they did on her debut, and she sounds even more confident than before. Given her ensemble cast of producers and guest rappers, she probably should sound confident. When you have Swizz Beatz and Dr. Dre handling the better part of your album, along with a few other tracks handled by Ruff Ryder producers Teflon and DJ Shok, there isn't need to worry — you know the beats are going to be cutting-edge. In terms of guests, the Ruff Ryders (DMX, Drag-On, and LOX) make their expected cameos. On paper, everything looks great — more muscle, top producers, and top rappers. And the results are just that: great. A few songs really stand out here: the lead-off single "Who's That Girl?," a Teflon track with a quick tempo and an extremely catchy chorus; "Let Me Blow Ya Mind," a Dr. Dre/Scott Storch track with an unmistakable 2001 sound and a smooth R&B chorus featuring Gwen Stefani on backup vocals; and "Life Is Hard," a unique soulful moment late in the album with Teena Marie contributing a diva chorus and Eve dropping some heartfelt lyrics. At 16 tracks, this album doesn't overreach and really doesn't have too many surprises. There are a few flawed moments where the choruses aren't as catchy as they intend to be, but for the most part Eve plays it safe. If you liked her first album, you'll like this one even better.


Born: 10 November 1978 in Philadelphia, PA

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Eve was one of a new breed of tough, talented, commercially viable female MCs to hit the rap scene during the late '90s. Though she could be sexy when she chose, she wasn't as over the top as Lil' Kim or Foxy Brown, and as part of the Ruff Ryders posse, her production was harder than Da Brat's early work with Jermaine Dupri. In the end, Eve came off as her own person; a strong, no-nonsense street MC who could hold her own with most anyone on the mike, and was finding success on her own terms. She...
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Scorpion, Eve
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