DJ Paul leads Da Mafia 6ix (formerly Three Six Mafia), a rap group known for its ultra-violent lyrics, but he’s also a husband who did an apparently hilarious episode of Celebrity Wife Swap and sells…wait for it… barbecue sauce. After rapping about the exact same stuff for 20 years, it’s not surprising that he’s running a separate business, and honestly, I’m just happy that it’s not a clothing line or liquor brand. But I find it interesting that his real life contrasts so completely with his music, and he doesn’t seem at all embarrassed by that fact. Hence, the recent solo album, Master of Evil, which can be succinctly summed up as a Three Six Mafia solo album for Three Six Mafia fans. But duty compels me to write a few more words on it.
This review ought to be easy. If you’re a hardcore Three Six lover, this will most likely be your jam, and you probably already have it blasting right now. It has the low-end heavy beats and simple, violent lyrics that you’d expect, and not much else. If somehow you didn’t do so already, go grab it, I’m sure you’ll love it.
But if you’re like me, a casual fan who mainly likes Da Mafia when they expend the effort to sound a bit different than their usual, then this is a very disappointing album. Paul does very little experimentation with the Three Six formula, so my patience wore thin quickly over these 23 tracks. How Paul wrote enough verses to fill so many songs with the same thug posturing that’s been a part of his group’s music for decades is beyond me, but maybe after 20 years it becomes second nature. Also, since this is a solo album without nearly as many features as you might expect, the lack of contrasting voices and flows from the other group members makes it get old even faster. Paul himself does precious little to spice things up, usually locking into one of his few goto cadences for whole verses and even songs.
But even a broken clock is right twice a day, so of course there are a few songs that I could tolerate much more than the rest, and these are listed below. There’s nothing really special about them, they’re just more solid than the others, usually due to features breaking up the hum-drum proceedings, or a better-than-the-rest instrumental.
And, while far from a good song, I found Die Anyway comedically ironic. It’s about his hard-headed childhood and feelings of hopelessness, and he advises his child listeners, “you gotta listen to your parents, cause they teachin yo ass some real shit,” but this comes after talking about killing and drugs for about 8 tracks in a row.
In short, like most gangsta rappers, Dj Paul, is a ridiculous person if you stupidly spend the time to critically think about him. But thinking is not what his music is about, and I’ve attempted that task and documented it here so you don’t get tempted to try. Your mileage with Master of Evil will vary depending on how much the Three Six formula appeals to you. Me, I can’t wait to never play this again.
- Bust Dat Cap
- F U 2 ft Violent J and Yelawolf (skip the corny Violent J verse to hear Yelawolf show just how much room for interesting flows exists on these beats and is wasted by DJ Paul. I really need to review some Yelawolf stuff soon.)