A part of the original Screwed Up Click created by the late DJ Screw, Lil’ Keke delivers his twelfth solo album. Earning a major deal, Keke delivers his mainstream debut, Loved By Few, Hated By Many.
Act A Fool With It: Organs, synths and choppy hats back Keke on this rousing album starter “Act A Fool With It”. While the hook is decent, Keke delivers a decent album starter. 3/5
Boss: Keyboard lines and synth built production back Keke and crooning Asiah and Cece. While the track has some solid club ready production, it ultimately is a remake of Rick Ross’ hit “The Boss” with T-Pain. While the production is good, the hook is merely mediocre and lyrically Keke isn’t saying anything too impressive. 3/5
Money In The City: Club ready production from Mr. Lee is solid, as synths and hi hats keep things on pace. H-Town stars Slim Thug and Paul Wall join Keke for a solid H-Town anthem that serves its purpose. The vocalist on the hook is a bit annoying, but overall the track is solid. 3.5/5
Miss My Boyz: Reflective and sincere track delivered by Keke as he does one for those that have passed. Paul Wall’s wife, Crys Wall croons Keke on the hook, but this is all Keke. Lyrically he’s focused and speaking about the past times he had with his fellow fallen comrades. 4/5
4 Doors And Coupes: Keke creates a summery Houston setting, as the relaxed production and lyrics of being with his girl are Keke’s attempt at commercial appeal. While it isn’t as significant here, it doesn’t seem like Keke’s style. Its likeable, but only decent. 3/5
I’m A G: Things get back in track, as Keke hooks up with famous H-Town producer, Mr. Lee. Signature synths and organs make this a straight banger. Despite being a bit old, it remains a solid Keke track that represents that classic H-Town sound, with Keke performing well with vivid lyrics describing his childhood. Solid track here, possibly the best on the album. 4/5
What It’s Made For: Recently blown up producer Bangladesh serves up some commercial appealing production and Blak croons horridly on the wack hook. Keke disappoints here and this track falls flat. 1.5/5
Phenomenal: Mediocre hook by Trae Virdue, the production is more feel good, strings dip and rise with soft piano keys. The track stays in mediocrity and never goes to the next level. 2/5
She Love Gangsta’s: Has some knock to it and a cool piano loop, however the track just doesn’t pick itself up, as Keke tries to appeal to the ladies once again. The topic is mundane and Keke can’t carry the track. 2/5
Suga Daddy: Decent performance by Vlissa Martinez, however the track sadly is another cliche commerical track that isn’t Keke’s forte. It falls in the same vein as “Phenomenal”, being nice and upbeat, but never picking up and simply being mediocre. 2.5/5
Traffic Slowed Down: Chopped organs and choppy hi hats run, while Keke is joined by Pinc Gator for a chopped and slowed up hook. Decent banger, not quite album status though, feels like a mixtape track. 3/5
Scholarships 2 The Pen: A more wise and veteran influenced track, Keke speaks to those coming up and delivery cautionary situations and dangers of “doing wrong”. Keke shines here due to his veteran and longevity in the game, which makes this track credible. 3.5/5
Slab Holiday: Solid ender with a funky H-Town vibe to it. Crys Wall guests on the track, Keke speaks about the slabs and comin’ down. 3/5
Lil’ Keke’s Loved By Few, Hated By Many is a mediocre release, but one waiting two years for it, may be a bit disappointed. While Keke has a few tracks on here, they are sadly much more commercial minded and not as classic H-Town as you would like to hear. The productions also feel very simplistic and lower quality, which leads you to wonder how much he was paid to get beats. What’s really disappointing is the amount of girl tracks, the horrid “What It’s Made For”, summery “Suga Daddy” and “Phenomenal”, and cold “She Loves Gangsta’s”, are all evidence of Keke’s attempt to appeal more towards the mainstream. While the beats are nice, Keke seems out of place speaking about the topics and followers probably prefer the Keke with that H-Town funk and knock in the beats. “Act A Fool With It” and “Slab Holiday” represent this while the signature H-Town sound shines on the banger “I’m A G”. “Money In The City” is a decent cut with fellow Houstonians Slim Thug and Paul Wall, while Keke pays respects to lost ones “Miss My Boyz” and drops knowledge “Scholarships 2 The Pen”. Overall its a pity that Keke spends so much time appealing to mainstream on a 13 track debut, there’s a few songs here, but unless your a die hard follower of S.U.C. and Keke, move on more to his older stuff.
Rating: 6 out of 10