For those who don’t know Hitboy, he is the producer behind one of last year’s biggest singles: The Throne’s, N**gas in Paris. If that doesn’t resonant with you, he has produced for other big names like: Jennifer Lopez, 50 Cent, Snoop Dogg, Lil Wayne, Rihanna, and Pusha T. His production skills have graced many albums within the last 5 years, and have landed him a place on Kanye West’s G.O.O.D Music brand as one of their in house producers. This time, Hit-boy has jumped from behind the boards and hit the microphone with his first mixtape release, HITstory. This mixtape is a clear example that Hit-boy cannot be contained to a singular avenue in music. He proves that he has the ability to stand with the rest of his G.O.O.D music family, and take center stage as a performer.
The mixtape comes out at the perfect time, as G.O.O.D music’s Cruel Summer will be releasing in one month’s time and it is one day before the one-year anniversary of Jay-Z and Kanye West’s Watch The Throne album being released. The overall construction of the mixtape not only shows of Hitboy’s abilities, but also can be seen as a precursor to the G.O.O.D music album. Catchy hooks, and smooth piano-based productions make this mixtape sound well polished and a labor of love from the producer turned rapper. The most notable songs on the album are: “Fan”, “Old School Caddy” feat. Kid Cudi, “Option” feat Big Sean, “East vs. West” and “Jay-Z Interview”. These songs showcase Hit-boy’s potential the best, as they sound as if they are songs designed for an album, not a free mixtape available on the Internet. Some artists struggle their entire career to capture the sound that Hitboy has displayed on this mixtape. Features on the album are strong with Kid Cudi, Big Sean, John Legend, Bun B, and Chip the Ripper all being featured on the mixtape. Altogether, mixtape is well produced, well executed, and will be well received by those who hear it.
One draw back to the album, is that the production is far better then the lyrics. While this seems to be the way that the industry is going, it would have been nice to see more quality lyrics and a better flow from Hitboy. While at times, it removes you from the listening experience; you are quickly brought back into the music by the catchy hooks.
HITstory, is a great mixtape. For Hitboy’s first solo offering, it is extremely solid and has a lot of potential. Looking towards the future, Hitboy has the potential to have a very successful production and solo career, just like his mentor, Kanye West.
- Israel Lattiboudeaire