Once an artist is revealed in the limelight and reaches mainstream success, it often can become a struggle for them to reproduce the same types of tracks that first launched them into the spotlight. Big name artists like Jay Z, Sean “P. Diddy” Combs and even 50 Cent simply cannot reproduce tracks like they used to because back in their humble roots their struggles were salient, their rise to fame unrecognized and their hunger unsatisfied.
Ace Hood has a knack of shunning any sort of spotlight the public has given him in recent years. The Florida native doesn’t boast his Cash Money or We The Best label deals and nearly excludes features from his tracklists; but he continues to show his unsatisfied hunger in the aptly named third installment of his Starvation mixtape series.
The rapper’s presence in 2013 and quick start in 2014 are clear demonstrations of Ace Hood’s work ethic. He released Starvation 2 this time last year, along with his fourth studio album Trials and Tribulations last summer; Ace Hood simply cannot stop his ceaseless flow of content, which sports a depth beyond just talking about how rich he is.
Ace Hood really brings his urban mentality into the studio, but words it so poetically that listeners cannot help but embrace the bars he spits. He puts his crew before himself, ride or dies for those he loves and mourns the losses of those he loves—while accepting everything as a part of the circle of life.
The best thing about listening to Starvation 3 is the constant feeling that Ace is never satisfied with his position in life. He always seeks to hustle, to make more money, to silence the haters and to lift up those he cares about in the process. He harshly criticizes what popular hip-hop is today and even goes as far as to claim that the legends of the past would condemn the work of most artists today.
Ace Hood personifies hip-hop in one track, on which he claims the love he has for it is not reciprocal—it has chewed him up and spit him out. “Save Us” takes the same emotional perspective as the previous portions of his mixtape but takes a different tone that forces listeners to stare down the heart-wrenching truths of the evils prevalent in society today.
Ace Hood has the star power to recruit a plethora of talent on Starvation 3, but he chooses not to. This shows that he has the talent to produce a quality piece of work without relying on features, and it really allows him to deliver the messages that he wants throughout the work.
Starvation 3 may not have a whole lot of radio-friendly jams, nor will it have a feature from another big-name rapper, but what it lacks in glamour it certainly makes up for in hard-hitting, deep, gritty content reminiscent of classic hip-hop. It’s a must-listen for any avid hip-hop fans.