Large Professor Main Source

It’s been a long six years since Large Professor put words to beats on a full-length album, and while the man has definitely maintained his beat craft in acceptable form over time, there’s a sense with new joint Main Source that the revered producer’s weather-worn style is beginning to show its age. High octane "golden-era” beats like that of "Pump Ya Fist,” complete with sharp throwback cuts, recall a time when Xtra P was king, while "Sewin’ Love” makes proper use of a slick and smooth guitar sample. All of this fairly decent beat work is dragged down, however, by a rather underwhelming lyrical showing characterized by a host of rather predictable themes, middling wordplay and some truly awful hooks. Toronto native Marco Polo deserves credit for laying down the record’s hottest tune ("Hardcore Hip Hop”) and while the rest of a set is hardly a throwaway by any stretch ("Large Pro Say” aside), you’ll find far more functionality than captivation here. (Gold Dust Media)