Album Review-Capone n Noreaga- the War Report 2

What's with rappers and doing sequels to albums? These aren't movies dog. Anyway, if there is any group who seems set up more to disappoint you by doing a sequel to their initial success, it's CNN. Although when you think about it, the follow-up to the original war report, The Reunion was a banger as well.

Attempting to bring back some NY flavor from the mid-90's, CNN start the album with "Pain" a classic East Coast banger talking about the problems going on in the hood. Capone's verse is especially resonating. "My Attribute" is about things that represent each of the rappers but it's bogged down by the song structure. "Favor for a Favor" has excellent production as well though I'm not sure how the verses relate to the hook. "Scarface" isn't too descriptive about the trappings of luxury from dope, that's Ross' domain, and CNN approach it from a more hood perspective. The duo also talks about the guys from their hoods who have been murdered on "Obituary". "Brother from Another" is one of the best songs they have made as each talks about their relationship together and the way they share their respective parents as an extended family. "Live on Live Long pt. 2" is a retrospective on the career of Capone N Noreaga as well as a play on one of the most fondly remembered songs from the debut album.

Avery Storm makes rounds to sing on "The Corner" about ....the corner and corner life. Nothign new but it works with CNN. Musalini resurfaces along with newcomer Imma Thug on the ultra-cliche (even for Capone n Noreaga) "Thug Planet" but the track and raps to harken back to the Queens heyday. "The Oath" with Raekwon and Busta Rhymes is another classic track where Rae and Busta rip the simple beat. on "With Me" with Nas, the verses would have been better without the lame and boring chorus. Raekwon is also on "The Reserves" a decent song where the artists flow over the beat, as well as being on "Dutches V Phillies V Bamboo" a Wu-tang type song that seems dated. "Bodega Stories" is a solid track as well with the Lox and CNN taking turns spitting about the Bodega. Faith Evans resurfaces to bring the nostalgia to it's peak on "Hood Love" as the duo expresses its love for the hood.

Overall, the album is a solid trip back to the 90's. It of course, does not really bang with the original although it is much better than I would have anticipated coming in to this album. Though they don't show any growth or true depth, Capone and Nore give you what you want and expect from them. It would have been wonderful to have this album with some of the stories and emotions they used up on their solo efforts or more about how their success has changed their views on growing up in the hood and those previous life experiences. If you're a fan of CNN or you're trying to get that old era feeling back in your system though, it's worth a listen or two.

Rating: 2.5/5


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