When Brooklyn emcee Joey Bada$$ released his debut album B4.Da.$$ I new I had to give it a listen. Now for a disclaimer: Prior to this record, the only full length project I’d listed to from Joey was his 2013 mixtape Summer Knights. That was a decent project but I still wasn’t buying all the way into the hype behind this kid. He’s had a growing following ever since stepping on the scene. Don’t get me wrong, Joey has had some songs that I’ve found dope, but nothing astonished me like how other rappers in his bracket have put out.
B4.Da.$$ is a solid debut album. A little light on features, but high on production. Hands down my favorite track is “Curry Chicken” produced by Statik Selectah. Other than that, I enjoyed O.C.B. and Like Me (feat. BJ The Chicago Kid). Most of Joey’s work has a 90s hip-hop nostalgic feel to it, but I don’t feel like his bars have longevity to stand next to other emcees. I appreciate his efforts to keep the backpack sound alive, but I never found his work to be all that spectacular to begin with. B4.Da.$$ is certainly worth listening to, and I could see “Curry Chicken” being a hit. All in all, this album stands at 3.5/5 flies.