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Greenspan: Got Green?

Greenspan: Got Green?

Label:Federal Reserve Music Group
Release Date:2008
Genre:Hip Hop/Rap
More info on local act


By Al Shipley | Posted 8/6/2008

With a slippery flow and effortless breath control, Greenspan puts most other Baltimore rappers to shame as a live performer, and Got Green?, his first full-length release, thankfully does not put the 22-year-old MC's natural talent to waste. His high voice and penchant for syllable-stuffing internal rhymes bring to mind Lupe Fiasco, but Greenspan's lyrical approach is less heady and imaginative. When he does get socially conscious, however, as on "Colors," he takes a refreshing approach, analyzing the psychology of Baltimore's gang culture while neither glorifying nor outright condemning it.

When Greenspan reaches out for the assistance of other hometown artists, he has the good taste to use the best, as exemplified by "Luv Jonez," which features a beat by local veteran DJ Boo Man and a hook by R&B siren Paula Campbell. "Colors" samples Ogun for its hook, and "Playing Dead" borrows a beat from local superproducer Blaqstarr. But instead of going for an obvious Baltimore club banger, Greenspan instead raps over "The Turn," Blaqstarr's downtempo collaboration with eclectic British singer M.I.A. And for every hard-edged hip-hop track, there's an offbeat freestyle over a Roy Ayers or Erykah Badu song. Still, considering that Greenspan raps every verse on Got Green? and produced one of the disc's tightest beats himself, the horn-driven "Fastlane," it's likely that he could have made just as good an album with no supporting cast.

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