Bun B and Pimp C make up UGK, one of the most respected groups to come out of the dirty dirty. Thanks to Jay Z, the group was just shy of commercial success before Pimp C got locked up for a probation violation.
Determined to carry on the torch until “they decide to free the Pimp”, Bun B comes center stage with his freshmen effort, Trill.
The lead off single, “Draped Up” is an ode to flossin and the car culture that other Houston emcees like Paul Wall and Mike Jones often rhyme about. “Now if you ever been to Texas, it’s a picture to paint…iced out watches, bracelets, chains, pieces, teeth, man we throwed in the game,” Bun rhymes on the bass heavy slow tempo track.
The problem with this album is also the strength of the disc. There are far too many guest appearances, but most of the supporting cast comes tight. “Get Throwed” is arguably one of the best songs on the album and boasts an impressive collaboration with Pimp C, Young Jeezy (yeeeeeeeeeah), Z-Ro and Jay Z. Jeezy appears twice on the album along side Scarface Pushin. All three emcees trade verses about the pitfalls of the hustle (and I don’t mean the rap game). “Whether it’s 16 bars or 16 bricks, move em one at a time, I’ll take 16 trips,” the Trap Star rhymes, holding his own amongst the vets.
There are moments on the album that will make a lot of listeners wish that Bun offered up more of himself, and cut back on the guest appearances. “The Story” is virtually the UGk story from the beginning to present day. For those of you who haven’t followed their long career, this track will get you up to speed. Bun shines solo on this and discusses everything from shady managers, getting the cold shoulder from Jive and the impact Jay Z and “Big Pimpin” had on their careers.
Unfortunately, there are a couple of minor missteps. The collabo with the Ying Yang Twins just doesn’t hit the mark, as Bun fails to match the energy of D-Roc and Kaine. The Twins easily dominate this track, and leave Bun sounding like the featured artist. The Jazze Pha assisted “I’m Ballin” is also another sour point on the disc. Bun stumbles again on “Late Night Creepin.” The only saving grace is that it’s at the end of the disc and if listeners hit the forward button, the bangers on this album start over.
While this album offers up no ground breaking material, the tried and true tales of pimpin (“Who Need a ‘B'”), revenge (“Retaliation is a Must”), and excessive flossing (“Fresh”) are all entertaining and will become guilty pleasures for even the most conscious rap fan.
If “Trill” is any indication of the future, there is a lot of life left for UGK.