Hustle Now Sleep Later / Various
'Super producer Ricky D gathers some of the A-State's hottest MCs together on this outstanding compilation. As the Hip Hop scene in Arkansas continues to grow artists continue to spread their wings and show that there's more to rap music than sex, drugs, drink and bling. "A-State's Finest" is one of the most impressive posse cuts ever. Ricky D lays down a deliberate beat complete with vivacious bass drums and funky synthesizer as 10, that's right, 10 MCs drop heat. The most impressive thing about the track is that it checks in at a mere five minutes and five seconds. Add to that the fact that the MCs lay down such precise verses that it never sounds convoluted or crammed together and actually leaves you wanting more. Excellent. Other superb cuts include "Security" which would be a certified crossover hit as soon as it hit the airwaves, the G-Funk infused "Who Told U That," the near-perfect "Don't Push Me" and on the standout cut "Luv 4 Da Hustle". Big Keys, a master producer and maker of music in his own right effortlessly slides back into the role of artist and provides an infectious hook you'll be singing for days without outshining the topflight wordplay. "Razorbacks" is a bonafide street anthem that every ridah in the A-State has to have. There is no denying the fact that what was once a liability in Arkansas Hip Hop has become arguably the strongest aspect of the music. For years the production level lagged behind the expertise of the artists but no longer thanks in large part to gifted music makers like Ricky D who don't just make beats, but produce songs. Great songs.' - Shon McPeace, Arkansas Democrat Gazette - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 'Make no mistake about it, this album is the realest of the real and it proudly sounds like it was indeed made in Arkansas.' - Shon McPeace, Arkansas Democrat Gazette.