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Portrait of Jim Jones

Jim Jones Shops at Nieman-Marcus

written by: on November 30, 2010

Jim Jones is the type of rapper who excels on tapes.

He’s not transcendent in the format like Weezy or Royce, but his shit-rap style works so much better in the disposable form of a free stream than it does on album-propers. Some of that is the freedom it allows him.

Jones is no lyricist so a format that encourages him to go big and stupid plays to his strengths. He also has a lot of fun on mixtapes, not making party-anthems, but aping the Re-Up Gang, cooking up coke and sniffing out snitches.

Listening to a Capo tape is like reading a Harry Potter book, it’s a breezy fantasy that’s fun and empty. Jimmy is the J.K. Rowling of rappers.

Most of it is the beats though. Listen to 2006’s anthem “We Fly High,” the song that put Jimmy on the map and it’s clear Jones doesn’t do anything special besides that his Jeezy-with-a-frog-in-his-throat style fits with a hot beat, the remix proves it, as Puff Daddy shows him up on his own track, (not exactly Eminem or Cannabis) and Yung Dro’s verse inspires dreams of the classic that could have been.

That’s why Capo Life works, because Capo gets to pick the best beats out there, and Whoo Kid is the perfect foil for Jimmy’s croaking studio gangster. Whoo Kid’s goofy clips and shout outs fit with the macabre-day dream Jones is selling.

Mostly though, Killa Cam is back! Cam’Ron makes an appearance on four of the tape’s 16 tracks and he’s a revelation, elevating the level of absurdity while grounding the whole thing in a grittiness Jones has never been able to convey no matter how many times he says heroin. While Jimmy’s “chain all glittery, car made in Italy,” Cam “fucks with bitches that do check scams.”

The first track Killa is featured on, along with Juelz Santana is a remix of Kanye West’s “Runaway,” a transcendent beat they recreate as a trapping anthem. Cam bodies the beat and along the way calls Kanye “a sucka-nigga” and accuses him of sucking off Hova.

Apparently a re-united Dipset is spending their time cooking Dame Dash’s beef. Elsewhere Gucci drops in to deliver an unsurprising verse. Gucci Mane is threatening to become the next Lil’ Wayne, a unique voice and talented lyricist who is willing to slide into a novelty act in exchange for a cash-out. Please Roderick, don’t do it.

However, I have a word of advice. Stop shouting out fashion shit.

Jimmy brags in this that he “smells like Nieman-Marcus,” really Capo? My fucking mom shops there, its in suburban malls, it’s a slightly more upscale Kohls.

What the fuck are you even talking about? All these rappers talking about Louis Vuitton and Dolce and Gabbana and all that bullshit, shut the fuck up. When Ghostface talked about dying Clark’s, or Nas was wearing chains that excited the Feds they were talking about a unique style that was relevant to the street lifestyle they were attempting to convey. What are you doing, talking about labels that are for new-money Midwesterners? It’s fucking embarrassing.