Profound: Carpe Diem
As Ogun's right-hand man, Profound has long been one of the most talented second-stringers in Baltimore hip-hop, without a solo project to call his own until now. On the second edition of the Oil and Water mixtape series in 2006, the duo highlighted their differences to great effect, Profound's slick punch lines contrasting with Ogun's sincerity and grim determination. Finally seizing his day with Carpe Diem, Profound has no foil to play off of, but proves himself to be perhaps the lyrical better of his Real on Purpose labelmate, if still a less compelling character on his own.
With just a few respectable original productions courtesy of LX Cruise and Stacks, Carpe Diem sometimes threatens to make Profound come off like a mere mixtape rapper, spitting over whatever song's hot at the moment. But the way he attacks some hits, particularly when going back and forth with Rockwell on Playaz Circle's "Duffle Bag Boy," is enough to leave a memorable mark on a familiar beat. While Pro's swagger and sense of humor define his persona, he still knows how to land a devastating punch to the gut. And that's what he does on the disc's opening verse on "Murda Dem," rebutting any hype about a new day dawning in Baltimore, civically or musically, with the blunt reality check, "the crime rate done rose since last year/ and everybody sayin' they got signed is still here."