Artist: Bone Thugs -N- Harmony
Album: Strength & Loyalty
Label: Full Surface / Interscope
Release Date: May 8, 2007
2. Bump In The Trunk (ft. Swizz Beatz)
3. Wind Blow
4. I Tried (ft. Akon)
5. Lil' Love (ft. Mariah Carey & Bow Wow)
6. C-Town (ft. Twista)
7. Order My Steps (ft. Yolanda Adams)
8. Streets (ft. The Game & Will.I.Am)
10. Gun Blast
11. Candy Paint (ft. Swizz Beatz & Autumn Rowe)
12. So Good, So Right (ft. Felicia)
13.Sounds The Same
14. Never Forget Me (ft. Akon)
Since the departure of Bizzy Bone from Bone Thugs -N- Harmony, many have been curious to whether or not the 3 remaining members Krayzie, Layzie & Wish Bone (also missing incarcerated Flesh-N-Bone, awaiting parole in 2008) could deliver on their own. Many were sceptical as last year's 'Thug Stories' was the first time the act has recorded as a trio (excluding internet only release 'Bone 4 Life'), but we were not disappointed by the independant album last September.
It appears as if "Dem Bone Boys" don't appear to be missing Bizzy however, with albums coming a year apart rather than 2 or 3 years as in prior years.
Strength & Loyalty, Bone's first major record label release in almost 5 years does in no way, however disappoint the fans.
Bone show their classic fast-flowing lyrics & Krayzie gives the chorus on the track 'Flowmotion', remeniscent of the B.O.N.E. Enterpri$e days with a new twist and production from The Individuals kicks off the album with a good vibe.
'Wind Blow' makes great work of the Fleetwood Mac sample of 'The Chain' and is one of the highlights of the album with Krayzie more than the others, showing just what he can do.
The production of the album features such respected hip hop producers as Swizz Beatz (also executive producer), The Individuals, Jermaine Dupri, Will.I.Am and Akon among others. Akon produced & guest appears on the lead single 'I Tried', singing the chorus of the piano laced track. The song tells the story of how things never seem to work out for the trio, family & relationship problems. Not the typical Bone Thugs song, but great none the less
There is plenty of the Thuggish Ruggish side of Bone in this album though, with '9mm' and Gun Blast' among others, these tracks show the Bone of old and would fit in perfectly with the tracks from 'E.1999 Eternal'.
But with guest appearances from stars such as Akon, The Game, Will.I.Am, Mariah Carey, Bow Wow & even the man who signed Bone Thugs to his Full Surface record label, Swizz Beatz, the Thugs are never overshadowed, after all they have been stars on their own for almost 15 years now and sold over 35 million records worldwide.
Even Twista makes an appearance on 'C-Town', denouncing the rumors that there was a beef between him & Bone over who originated the 'fast rap' style. The only near negative statement i can make about this record is that the 2 penultimate songs 'So Good, So Right' 'Sounds The Same' lack something that the other songs have and may be considered filler songs by some. Even with these songs though, the final song, 'Never Forget Me' also produced & featuring Akon is one of the gems of the album, stating what Bone has done over the years and how they won't be forgotten because of it, and the lyrics & harmonies end the album on a high note.
Overall the tightly-knit, fast flowing lyrics and top production makes this album one of the best to come from Bone Thugs -N- Harmony, showing both old and new styles of the group.
TOP TRACKS: 1.Flowmotion 3.Wind Blow 4.I Tried 11.Candy Paint 14.Never Forget Me
RAPCENTRAL OVERALL RATING: 4/5
ALL MUSIC GUIDE REVIEW:
The title to Bone Thugs-N-Harmony's 2007 comeback album, Strength & Loyalty, must be a reference to their fans. Despite handing in some forgettable efforts, emptying fans' wallets with too many solo and side projects, and promising new product and not delivering repeatedly, Bone always got a pass from faithful. Strength & Loyalty is also too heavy a title for an album so light and slick. Big names like Mariah Carey, Akon, the Game, Swizz Beatz, and Twista all command their tracks, unknowingly stealing from a group that used to be instantly identifiable because of their unique sound and style. This 2007 edition of Bone is missing members Flesh-N-Bone (thanks to incarceration) and Bizzy Bone (thanks to his being Bizzy Bone) and it shows. As a trio Krayzie, Layzie, and distant third Wish are a solid crew, able to deliver good weekend numbers like "Bump in the Trunk," "Lil Love," and "C-Town" (they never forget Cleveland) along with polished gangsta tracks like "I Tried." In the big picture, Bizzy and Flesh are missed, but what's remarkable about Strength & Loyalty is how it makes the listener forget they're missing while in the moment. Numerous melodious hooks in the easy-rolling Bone tradition fog the memory, and guest stars are brought in at just the right moments. Mariah speaks to the commercial possibilities Bone always had, while the Game speaks to how they seemed to never leave the streets. Every song is at least solid and the album flows very well, making it one of the better-built efforts from the house of Bone in nearly a decade. Problem is, this album could have twice the star power and it wouldn't make up for how important Bizzy's strange voice was for the overall chemistry. Strength & Loyalty doesn't overcome its challenges; it just sidesteps them and works hard to reward fans for a decade of patience. It's as good as it can be, and better than expected.
Last edited by Bronz on Sat Jun 16, 2007 12:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.