Always unappreciated but never undervalued, Freeway played Roc-A-Fella’s wingman steadily for a good 7 years. With the label’s status on indefinite timeout, Free takes his ball to play with the indie’s for his third album Philadelphia Freeway 2. But unlike previous releases where vigor and tenacity complimented an awkwardly enjoyable hustle n’ flow, Freeway opts to travel the speed limit where he’s typically known to mash the gas pedal.
The inaugural Philadelphia Freeway showcased a hungry Roc-A-Fella roster over dynamic production with endless street classics like the fantastic Jay and Beans collabo “What We Do.” The sequel only manages to meet its consistency in the fact that it happens to be a Freeway album. With no standout single or radio-ready cut present, PF2 grudgingly mills through monotonous melodies and uninspired concepts for the entire duration. Street haasish “Gotz To Be The Bomb” and “Crack Rap” suffers from hamster wheel momentum with no thanks to repetitive production of Real Talk Ent’s in-house soundmen.
Thankfully, Free’s bark still has some bite no matter how numbing the beats may get. His rendition of Ice Cube’s classic “Today Was A Good Day” obviously has nothing on the original but it does underline that complacent feel with Cozmo’s bassline smoothing out the tales of Freeway’s errands. In equally positive contrast, “All Around The World” consists of the ferocious delivery and gritty production that the Philly rhymer has used to carve his niche. Sadly, instances like this are few and far in between with out of place skits and tepid ghetto gospel as heard on “Streets Won’t Miss Him” tend to populate the brief outing.
Using the namesake of his celebrated debut for recognition appears to be Freeway’s angle on the heels of this nondescript release. The album’s most ambitious track finds the bearded one elated that he’s “Finally Free.” But if Philadelphia Freeway 2 is an inkling of future dealings, then the chains need to refastened pronto. Roc-A-Fella chains to be exact.