Cincinnati isnâ€™t known as a hot-bed of hip hop, but when you think of the city and the music together, Hi-Tekâ€™s name is sure to arise. Hi-Tek, the super-producer, has a long record of work with formidable MCs, but seems to keep a low profile during the era of overexposure. Hi-Teknology 2: The Chip is his third release and the second in collaboration with several talented artists on the scene today.
â€œJosephineâ€ is the first track that jumps out as Ghostface and Pretty Ugly tell the tale of a good girl turned drug addict. Hi-Tekâ€™s â€œWhere it Started Atâ€ is yet another installment in the series of songs glorifying NYC. In a misguided alteration of style, Tek channels the unmistakable sounds of West Coast rap in â€œ1-800-HOMICIDE,â€ featuring The Game. â€œSo Tiredâ€ is a journey to the south where Bun B and Devin the Dude join Pretty Ugly with slow and melodic production.
Itâ€™s never fair to critique a compilation album released by a producer; there are just too many variables. The producer can put his or her heart into the beats only for the rapper to ruin the track. The audience is unforgiving of bad verse. Hi-Tek wasnâ€™t able to avoid this pitfal even with artists such as Nas, Talib Kweli, Ghostface Killah, Busta. Tekâ€™s beats are eclectic; he even dabbles with sounds from different regions of the country, but in the end, a track needs more than interesting beats. Hi-Teknology 2: The Chip is yet another mediocre album in an era of mediocrity.
Rating: 3 out of 5
Best tracks: â€œJosephine,â€ â€œMarch,â€ â€œWhere it Started At,â€ â€œSo Tiredâ€