Since his first independent album, 'From Da Dope Game 2 Da Rap Game,' released in 2000, Yo Gotti has been a busy guy, releasing a series of mixtapes and a pretty well-received album in the way of 'Live from the Kitchen.'

Now with his latest tape, 'Nov 19th,' which signifies the release date of his next full-length album, 'I Am,' the Memphis rapper is clearly looking to wet pallets and give listeners a taste of what's in store this fall.

'Nov 19th' is 11 tracks, produced by the likes of Zed Zilla, the Youngstars and the Mekanics, just for starters, and has guest features by Shy Glizzy, DJ Drama and a typically animated Meek Mill.

Right from the start, it begins with the soulful sounding 'Gangstas Don't Talk,' where Gotti reminds listeners that he's far from a studio thug and comes from a place in Tennessee where he's survived many hood challenges.

And on 'Cocaine Cowboys,' he again takes the opportunity to call out fake dope boys, and lyrically makes it known that he's not one of them.

"Move to Miami to get close to the plug / Everybody know Yo Gotti sell drugs / Brand new Phantom ain't sold no records / He a dope boy that's why the streets respect him," he spits.

Musically, there's nothing too spectacular on 'Nov 19th,' as each track bleeds into the next, which doesn't help to elevate Gotti's rhymes or storytelling.

On the song '10 Shots,' featuring Jordan Hollywood, producer Zed Zilla goes the R&B route, but doesn't add anything new to the mixing of the two genres. Instead, he puts together a track that sounds like it could have easily been made in the early '90s, when R&B and hip-hop first started to merge.

Other problems with 'Nov 19th' is its length, because with a project being so short, it forces a rapper to be even more precise in his overall delivery, beat selection and the verses. In other words, an 11-song mixtape leaves very little room for error, because if you don't like a handful of songs, there aren't many more to save the project.

But that's not to say that Gotti creates something dramatically subpar, because he does have some good lyrical moments where he comes off as a well-seasoned rapper with something to say about the streets. But other times, it just sounds like he's lyrically phoning things in, like on the song 'Yayo' for example.

And there are other problems with the tape.

For some reason, Gotti chooses to give three separate soliloquies about properly moving in the streets, and gives advice on what you need to do to survive the drug game or the legitimate business world. Three times on an 11-song mixtape is a bit much, which is another misstep that Gotti makes.

'Nov 19th' is good to download if you're a Yo Gotti fan, but if you're not familiar with his music and want to grab a project that will give you a glimpse into what he's good at, this isn't the one.

You're probably better off picking up 'Live From the Kitchen,' listening to past mixtapes or actually waiting until Nov. 19 to buy 'I Am,' which isn't too far off. Hopefully, Gotti will come with something that has a little more appeal on his new album.



Listen to Yo Gotti's 'Nov 19th' Mixtape

More From