MIXTAPE REVIEW: Young Jinsu “It’s Been Said”
April 11, 2012 at 5:00 pm
Young Jinsu is determined. That’s it. That’s what sets him apart. It’s not so much that he’s skilled at rhyming (which he IS). Or that he’s becoming an extremely capable storyteller (also VERY true). It’s his determination to be better. He talks a big game, but he backs it up. I’ll admit I was skeptical before I listened to this mixtape. Not because of who Jinsu is, but because I never really have most artists live up to their hype when it comes to my reviews. The bigger they are, the harder they fall in my eyes. At this point, tripping Jinsu up is seemingly an impossible task.
I wasn’t aware of the skill Jinsu possesed until very recently. I had heard him in a few cyphers, and a few of his covers, but never really anything that was personal to him. After listening to this project, I must say…..I am a fan. He may not spark the mind as much as say maybe Diggy, or get as deep as J. Cole, but in his age bracket, he’s definitely one of the best.
“It’s Been Said” is a great opener, showcasing and highlighting the young rappers’ cypher-honed edgy rhymes. He goes in here, and sets a great tone. Whats great about this is that he allows it to be edgy, but not edgy enough to squeeze out the songs of his that are more commercial. As if on cue, a pop-ish track comes next, “See The World”. This one is definitely more commercial, with an uplifting message. The production doesn’t really take it to the next level as it should, but it’s a nice companion to Jinsu’s lyrics.
“Tim Tebow” is fun, but doesn’t get to me like I know it could. This could be a production issue. “My Bizzness” is like a Kanye “808′s & Heartbreaks” song all Jinsued-out. I didn’t like it at first, but it DEFINITELY grew on me. I love the groove of it. “Look At Her Go” is ready for the radio. This is when Jinsu shows his ability to break his flows down just enough for people to dance to. He doesn’t sacrifice his rap IQ for anything though, and that of course is an outstanding quality of his.
“Flow For You” is the start of Jinsu taking a stab at being a storyteller. I honestly think this is where he shines. He will always be a great punchline rapper. But he almost seems to be a different rapper when he takes you into his world. The lyrics are endearing in this song, and it’s very easy to visualize even the most complicated images, a true testament to his abilities. I dislike the chorus of the beat though. Enough to be noted. “Insecure” is fantastic, but it sounds like a song he should have released 5 years from now. Not that it’s more mature than the other tracks on the mixtape, but more because it’s sounds like something on a sophomore album. Almost like a song that would be a favorite at a concert. It’s definitely one of my favorites.
More radio ready material comes in the form of “Pretty Lady”. This is a Chris Brown song, I swear it. But since I think Jinsu is a far better rapper than CB, I’m glad that it is where it is. The top down, and a boo thang present is almost a necessity when this song is on. The back stretch of the mixtape is glorious. He’s at his best lyrically here. The rhymes are vivid, passionate, and real. “The Hit” is a melodic movie. You can literally close your eyes, and picture EVERYTHING. Great stuff man.
“Farewell” is lighthearted, and yet heavy at the same time. The production is almost whimsical and compliments the lyrics about separation and determination very well. This is the song that, even if you somehow thought Jinsu was wack, you would listen to it and be like “I mean, he aight.” “Drown” is a sort of a tell-all about some female escapades. Though it is severely misplaced, I like the song. It should have been placed earlier in the mixtape. It sticks out like a sore thumb in the midst of all the uplifting, inspirational, “I’m gonna make it” songs.
The mixtape’s finale, “Thank You”, is the perfect swan song. Couldn’t be produced, or spit better. This is the song you perform in a stadium to the fans that don’t skip songs on albums. Maybe even the song you exit the stage on. It’s honesty is staggering, and even though some things said are so personal that fans may be a little lost – you can still relate.
If you would have told me last year that this mixtape would be one of my favorite projects this year, I would have chuckled a little bit. This is why you should never judge anyone from preconceived notions. Now that I’ve listened for myself, I can’t help but say, it might not be the BEST release of an unsigned artist this year, but it’s certainly my favorite. I can say that with confidence. It’s been said that Jinsu has a hot one on his hands – and my oh my is it true.
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