Criss Jrumz is the type of artist that makes hip-hop heads such as myself feel like the genre is still alive. The emcee out of Broward County, FL dropped a project that puts most of today’s rap to shame. It’s called “Street Light Therapy”.
I’ll be honest, as soon as I started this album my eyes instantly widened. With most of today’s music consisting of trap beats and elementary bars, it’s rare that I hear something that makes me bob my head and make the “stank face”. I was doing both of those things for the duration of the project. Jrumz’s, voice, flow/cadence, lyrical ability and production choices make him a true emcee. I spent over 20 minutes trying to decide if he reminded me more of Eminem, Royce Da 5’9, Meek Mill, Pusha T or someone else. I eventually decided that he has such a unique sound that it’d be unfair for me to say he sounds like a mainstream artist.
Not to compare, but this album makes me think of Reason’s “There You Have It”. This is because they are both are relatively short, both are full of bars, both feel like real hip-hop and both of them speak on sensitive and serious topics. “Street Light Therapy” really made me feel like I was walking the blocks of New York City in the late 90s. It made me feel serious at times, sad at others, and even angry during certain tracks.
Jrumz can certainly write raps; however, what makes him stand out is his delivery. As an artist myself, I strive to deliver in a captivating way. The ability to switch up cadences and use different inflections to makes bars and punch lines stand out is imperative. Jrumz appears to have almost mastered this and it makes the project so much more fun to listen to, especially as a rapper.
This is a project that I will add to my personal library and it takes a lot for me to do that with an artist I’ve never listened to before. This album feels and sounds like what I’d like to hear from an artist selected to be a XXL freshman. It’s cohesive, it showcases the artist’s skillsets (delivery, writing, lyricism and even some singing) and it leaves the listener wanting to hear what music drops next and how the artist will develop with time. Overall, this album is excellent and is one of the best I’ve heard in 2019 period.