Freddie Gibbs’ road is layered with evocative imagery; when he delivers, he delivers. His does not hold anything back, and his tough guy attitude never falters, contributing to the dark themes that are commonplace in the world of gangsta-rap. In his latest EP, Lord Giveth, Lord Taketh Away, Freddie Gibbs continues on with his street-smart bravado, teaming up with producer Statik Selektah, and a list of guest appearances, to create a 19 minute mix of ’70s music influenced production, hyper-technical rhymes from Gibbs and contributing bars from an eclectic roster of guests.
From beginning to end, this album does not indicate it was made in a day (which it was); Statik Selektah obviously takes his production seriously, as every beat and every note are synchronized perfectly, allowing Gibbs’ malleable flow to just smoothly go through well-chosen samples. Heavy organs start things off in, “Lord Giveth Lord Taketh Away,” where Gibbs showcases his ability to transition from rapid-fire, to staccato-driven rhymes, in a matter of seconds.
“Rap Money,” features Dogg Pound member, Daz Dillinger, who compliments Gibbs’ style with his similar, baritone-like delivery. “Affiliated,” is an onslaught of just raw, unrestrained delivery from Gibbs, and guests Reks & Push! Montana. “For real MCs to kill the likes of Lil Bs,” angrily proclaims Reks. Yikes.
Fred The Godson and Termanology shine on, “Wild Style.” The title is fitting for the the deliveries, especially Termanology’s; “I’ll put the grenade in your mouth, and blow your life apart,” rhymes Termanology, his machine gun flow almost as deadly as the images he creates with them.
“Keep It Warm For Ya,” is somewhat humorous in a way; Gibbs, along with Smoke DZA and Chace Infinite, rhyme about their sexual prowess, and how it keeps the ladies coming back for more. “Fix me mac and cheese, you know I’m a fat n***a,” states Smoke DZA, his clever wordplay also hilarious, considering the moody atmosphere Selektah creates on this track.
Lord Giveth, Lord Taketh Away is a solid release, and although it may not be near his strongest release, Gibbs proves that, even in a day, he can create something that looks completely effortless and flawless, proving that he is one of the most solid rappers in the game right now.