Originally published at LV City Life
For mainstream audiences, Killer Mike went as quick as he came. An appearance and a Grammy on OutKast’s “The Whole World,” and then he faded to the indie scene. In the years following, Mike Bigga stayed on the grind, further honing his craft through a series of independent releases. Now, with a co-sign from TI, he returns to the big stage with Pl3dge.
There’s an undeniable stream of consciousness that flows through the album, evidenced by tracks like “That’s Life 2” and “God in the Building 2,” which find Mike waxing about the role of the church, politics and other societal ills. In the next breath, he’s trading 16s with Young Jeezy (“Go Out on the Town”) and Gucci Mane (“Animal”). The opus is rounded out with a scathing indictment of America (“American Dream”) and the inspiring “Follow Your Dreams.” And contrary to what Mike spits on “That’s Life 2” — that “dumb kids look up to rappers” — he’s one to follow.
Very rarely does an emcee move the crowd and craft songs of substance. Bigga does both, remaining authentic throughout.Pl3dge may go down as the foundation that bridged the gap between “mainstream” and “conscious” fans. This is truly one of 2011’s gems. ANTHONY SPRINGER, JR.