Big Proof Grown Man Sh!t

Despite being in a financially comfortable position in the bosom of Shady Records, Big Proof still wants recognition as a solo MC. His latest project gives Proof room to express himself out from under the Shady umbrella. All the colourful stupidity from D12 is refreshingly absent from this 23-track album that plays like a diary where Proof can get serious and address some of Detroit’s situations. Grown Man Sh!t is a collaboration between Proof and Detroit producer DJ Salam Wreck, but a large array of producers lay tracks on this album giving Proof a good variety of soulful grit to work with. "Wots Up,” produced by Eminem, has Proof and MC Horny Mac, rapping about "what’s up” over a jazzy arrangement of dark and light keyboards. However, the other three tracks produced by Mathers are too dark, unorganised, and would never see major label light. "Sting Bling” is a boozy paced track produced by Mr. Porter that actually works because of the mid-tempo hand claps, subtle synths, and Proof’s boozy rhymes about women and trying to get rich. "Apollo G’s” is a confessional where Proof spills his guts about broken friendships, past mistakes and the unforgotten people he was once closer to; it’s one of the gems on this album thanks to the moody arrangement produced by Reef. The underlying novelty on this album is all the different styles from the 13 producers; with so many hands on a project, it takes away from any concision in sound. However elusive the focus of his latest project might be, Proof shows he’s got something to say and then some. Grown Man Sh!t is worth checking out. (Iron Fist)