David Banner - Sex, Drugs & Video Games (Mixtape Review)

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2.75

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Instead of making his intended point, Banner's only managed to reinforce the one he was rallying against.

Hands up: who likes playing educational video games? Nope, didn't think so. The equal mix of entertainment and education - Edutainment as KRS-One once called it - is the broad theme behind David Banner's free album, which despite styling itself after the Grand Theft Auto series of games and running with a sensationalist heading, is meant to be the Mississippi rapper and producer's theory on how Rap music and the mainstream media regurgitate and reinforce the topics of the title. Unfortunately, the virtuous attempt at a message comes across as confused.

To introduce the concept, the album is broken up by short skits involving a computerized female voice saying things like, "David Banner, would you let someone call your mother or daughter a bitch? If not, then why would you call someone else's mother or daughter a bitch?" But, well, Banner has - and many times. And the album fails to respond to the question: As early as the fourth track in, "Yao Ming Remix," A$AP Rocky is featured rapping, "Shorty dancing got a whole lot of ass on her/ If she don't like a jiggy nigga, I'm a pass on her." (The song also features the detestable Chris Brown, whose presence alone should be reason enough to pass over the project.) It's soon followed by "Smoked Out," a track about a wayward female featuring Bun B that offers nothing in the way of instruction or salvation - the message boils down to Hip Hop's usual latent misogyny of pointing a finger and saying, "Eew, you have a dirty vagina."

Conceptually, it's not like the guests (which also include Snoop, Weezy and 2 Chainz) are used as a counter-point to Banner's wider points. Despite taking literally years of really hard thinking to write lines like "Boom, I've been pumpin' pussy like gas, nigga," there's no Slaughterhouse-style parody behind Chainz's raps - it's just more of the sort of stuff Banner's meant to be calling into question.

The muddled direction of Sex, Drugs & Video Games means that Banner's more focused moments - like the title track and "Malcolm X (A Song To Me)" - are lost among the mire. Instead of making his intended point, Banner's only managed to reinforce the one he was rallying against.

DX Consensus: "Just a Mixtape"

Listen to Sex, Drugs & Video Games by David Banner

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49 Comments

  • DR Jam

    Boom, I've been pumpin' pussy like gas, nigga," LMAO

  • Anonymous

    agree w reveiw totally.

  • Lex

    This album ( mixtape ) got only one great track, and that's Believe ( feat. Big K.R.I.T. ). Couple aiight tracks and that's it. Huge letdown.

  • terry

    Really big letdown.

  • mdkeren2

    BELOW on every new video article and basically any new piece of content

  • Anonymous

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  • pannik

    i love that dude......

  • DJ

    This review is on point. The mixtape is lost in it's own premise. When I hit play on this, I expected to be enlightened and beyond a few tracks I was really put off. When DB is focused on his message, the album hits it's mark but the majority of the cd is filled with the same things that he is detesting. Collab songs like Believe and Swag Remix belong because atleast they aren't pushing the message of money and pussy. The second I heard Chris Brown spit "Your girl pussy is my cologne" i was taken aback. Sure the beats are dope and some of the songs are good, but he didn't go into saying that he was making a simple mixtape. He's proclaimed a message since go and he missed the mark. Take all the collabs off and leave his solo joints on and we'll have a different story. I believe in Banner's message about controlling media, but this isn't the way to go about it.

  • chris

    iawno. i feel like the review really focused on the bad aspects of the tape when Banner is still rapping very well and the beats knock. Yes, it definitely comes across confused and muddled at times, but still an entertaining mixalbum.

  • RM

    Good mixtape,but it is good only for people who have heard any Banner`s mixtapes or albums before.For others,the rating of new mixtape is between 2 and 3.

  • Corey

    This is a good mixtape, shit i rekon it could of possibly been an album..

  • camplo

    I agree with the review. The exact same way I felt about it. Didn't really understand the direction Banner was going with it. Didn't stick with the theme.

  • Anonymous

    This deserves a 4 at least its a lot of hating going on , real talk

  • supremelover

    terribly written review, way too subjective. and dont judge the music based on your opinion of the artists and whatever theme you think it has to adhere, judge it on the quality of the music first and foremost, the rest is secondary. the quality of this site is heading in a bad direction, and this is coming from somebody who goes on here everyday

  • ShadowPrecinct

    This is a horribly written review. I'm not a hardcore banner fan, musically, though I respect his intelligence and his stance on a lot of different issues. But when you say something like: "The song features the detestable Chris Brown, whose presence alone should be enough to pass over the project." Because YOU don't like Chris Brown, you're suggesting for people to not listen to an entire David Banner album? That's pretty silly, especially for someone who is supposed to be writing an objective review. Damn, Killer Mike just showed a perfect example of occupying both spaces of thought (hood/ignorant shit vs. socially conscious/thought provoking shit) with his excellent RAP Music, an album that was given a pretty glowing review on this site. Although Banner's execution may not have been as well done as Mike and El-P, the concept of balancing those things is not new. Do better Mr. Mlynar.

  • buckeyewu

    Im gonna check it out. Banner is underated!

  • Anonymous

    Im sure this project is getting a lot of hate from the industry just based of its indie prototype. I am sure they re spending money to make sure this gets bad reviews but fuck them. Support indie artist, its all that matters, fuck all majors, real talk.

  • Anonymous

    Good album I liked it.

  • Crooked Lettaz

    Banner misses his mark a lot. His only great, GREAT solo effort was Death of A Pop Star... and it's like 21 minutes long. "Swag" had me way too gassed up.

  • Anonymous

    This writer has never been too the hood probably a clampet or someone who thinks he is he probably never knew the meaning of Outkast either prob thought it mean slamming Cadillac doors

    • tigerpawraw

      What the fuck does that have to do with anything, him not being from the hood? That's one of the most idiotic things I've ever read. And the "meaning" of Outkast? WTF is that??? Jesus!

  • Anonymous

    This review was just short sighted and just another example of the media down playing a brother doing something positive Hiphop dx should be ashamed of thls review

  • Anonymous

    Ie they didn't like Chris Brown kill yourself that young brother needs to be working with a artist like Banner

  • Anonymous

    The fact that this album is free and that Banner is giving it away shows this brother is commited to trying to make a change while still getting the respect of and working with his peers in hiphop u can y make a change on top of a hill u got to be among the people who need the message this reviewer wasted time talking about what they didn't like personally about banner instead looking and analyzing the project as a whole

  • Anonymous

    Obviously this writer either is not versed in consious hiphop history or they just gave this project a surface the writer mentioned the Krs1 edutainment but didn't make the connection between Loves gonna get cha and the cautionary tale californication or the computer voice ala Tribe called quest Midnight Marauders which was not a album of prayers and hymnals but still made valid points about the state of black people and hiphop this review sucked

  • Anonymous

    wack just like yao ming

  • pastor;mase

    If you liked his album "Death of a Pop star" you'r gona like this. Cop it!

  • sumguy

    Instead of shitting on the positive thing that david banner is doing why dont you shit on the system that ENCOURAGES black mc's to get as ignorant as possible on the mic. David made those commercial tracks with Chris B and people of that nature to try to bring entertainment and enlighten the listener on this project. "Death of a pop star" was a really good album and hiphopdx rated it 4/5 stars. But who listened to it? Who said anything about it? Nobody, and so the message was lost because no one gave a fuck about it. So with this project he was trying to push his message to more people by putting some commercial songs on the album. Why? So ignorant muthafuckas would be tricked into learning something. I do acknowledge that those filler tracks was a tough pill to swallow but I love what david banner is talking about lyrically in the other songs like Malcom X for example. The commercial artists that was on the project seemed like they were'nt on the same page with Banner though. The interludes is what plagues his mind as an artist, african american, and a man. JUST LISTEN to what he is saying on songs like "Sex,drugs and money" , "Swag Remix", "Who's That" , and especially "Malcolm X". But there are fun tracks on the album as well.

  • Anonymous

    Banner is a good rapper but he's never be capable of putting together a solid album.

  • Anonymous

    HEEELL Y EEEZZZ MY NIKKKAS Finally It Happened.....I got rid of all my ISHHH from my cre dit report y'all - I was in a deep Gutta for 5 years. Coudn't buy sheeet. Just approved for that 25k loan to buy a new CAMA ARO!!! IF YOU GOT PROBLEMS WITH THAT CRE DIT REPORT ISHH, GET IT CLEAN y'all. YOu can get yours too, call these people at EIGHTEIGHT8-927 -335SIX - they did an amazing job for me and fo a price that can't be beat nowhere, cheap as fuck. Got Rid of all my Shyyt. My homeboy was in terrible shape too, and he clean! Gettin a condo. Hit em up - they will help!!!!!

  • Anonymous

    sorry mean to say album cover is quality

  • Anonymous

    very average tape. I was expecting more. Like the review re-iterated.... the message came across and confused and misshapen! I like Banner but this really didnt do anyting to help him. Album is qaulity though

  • You Know

    Expected more outta this. Kinda stopped the momentum I feel he had goin for him. Still a couple real good tracks on it though. Love the sample in "Believe" Just too much shitty filler.

  • nibs

    hahaha I've always thought banner was over-rated. he's always trying to be this political minded conscience rapper, but then he does things like marketing campaigns for mercedes-benz and commercial as fuck songs with Snoop.

  • Anonymous

    the mixtape was disappointing.

  • H.

    Stopped reading at (The song also features the detestable Chris Brown, whose presence alone should be reason enough to pass over the project.)

  • H.

    Stopped reading at : (The song also features the detestable Chris Brown, whose presence alone should be reason enough to pass over the project.)

  • H.

    Stopped reading at : (The song also features the detestable Chris Brown, whose presence alone should be reason enough to pass over the project.) If you hate him, okay. But don't write it fool!

  • H.

    Stopped reading at " (The song also features the detestable Chris Brown, whose presence alone should be reason enough to pass over the project.)" If you hate him, okay. But don't write it fool!

  • huh

    It's a mixtape. Mixtapes aren't rated... It's good that it's not rated, cause it's way below par to Banner's albums lately.

  • Anonymous

    So, does "NOT RATED" mean a 1/5? It seems to be a trend. Everytime a review is done for a bad project, the rating turns up M.I.A.

    • You Know

      Its a mixtape so they rate it on a different scale. The rating was "just another mixtape". Its at the end of the article. Gotta read the whole thing not just look at the ?/5.