Album review

Ja Rule - The Last Temptation

Irv Gotti's Murder Inc crew have dominated the hip hop mainstream in the past couple of years with their glossy dilution of G-funk. Ja Rule epitomises the style, mingling macho posturing with gruff attempts at sensitivity; "Thug Lovin'" is the most telling title here. One suspects, too, that his popularity is down to impressive musculature as much as rhyming skills, since his clumsy barking artlessly copies the style of real-deal DMX. And what a treat to discover another album (following Xzibit's recent Man Vs Machine) that samples Toto's "Africa".

Joy unconfined.

Rating: 2 / 10


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Editor's Letter

Reviewed: Respect Yourself: Stax Records And The Soul Explosion by Robert Gordon


As Robert Gordon reminds us in Respect Yourself: Stax Records And The Soul Explosion, his terrific account of the rise and fall of the great Memphis soul imprint, the Stax story is more than a record-label history. “It is an American story,” Gordon writes,”...