Jahlil Beats, ‘Genius’ – Mixtape Review
Since around 2009, producer and rapper Jahlil Beats has created an impressive resume by working with the likes of Jay-Z, Rick Ross and 50 Cent, and that's just some of the A-list artists he's worked with. In fact, his impressive beats have earned him a spot both on Meek Mill's Dream Chasers Records and Jay's Roc Nation.
And now, the Pennsylvania-raised beat-smith has created an instrumental project called 'Genius,' which seemingly samples music from known and obscure records to create a solid and entertaining piece of work.
The project gets off to a good start with the title track, which quickly lets listeners know why Jahlil has become one of the most sought after producers of his day. And clearly, one of the project's highlights is 'Triangle Success,' where Jahlil takes a person's scream, samples it and bounces it in between attention-grabbing string sounds and pulverizing drums.
And the quality beats keep coming with 'The Ghost,' where continuous light, keyboard sounds fit perfectly over a quiet drum loop. The track could easily be used by a rapper or an R&B artist for its mainstream accessibility and its overall level of catchiness.
After that, things take a soulful turn on the cut 'Doing This,' where the young producer samples a melodic singing voice for what seems to be the chorus. A soulful track like this could have easily been on one of Jay Z's 'Blueprint' albums, especially his first one.
If there are any downsides to 'Genius,' and there aren't many, it's the lack of changes that are used in each track.
For the most part, having a loop or riff run straight through an entire song works well on the project, but sometimes the loops get too repetitive, like on the song 'The Hustle.'
Although it's a head-nodder, the track is too slow-paced not to have any changes, and without a rapper on it, the song drags a little bit. Some might say if you're going to release an instrumental, you'll have to add a few sounds to keep the listener's attention, and Jahlil fails to do this on a couple of tracks.
But fortunately, most of 'Genius' is full of superior beats by a producer who has a well-developed sound and musical direction. Sometimes, you'll hear a producer who may have solid beats, but they'll be all over the place stylistically. Jahlil does a good job of creating his own sound, but he's still able to make each beat vary sonically, which is an important skill to have as a producer.
Quite simply, 'Genius' is one of those instrumental projects that'll be good to own because you can either enjoy the tracks by themselves, rhyme over them or couple them with vocal tracks if you're a DJ. And that's all you can ask from a good instrumental release. After listening to this project, you'll probably agree that Jahlil Beats isn't going anywhere anytime soon.
Listen Jahlil Beats' 'Genius' Mixtape