Once again, I’m playing something that I didn’t expect nor want. Why spend the time? Mainly, because
I need the clicks! No Way Out was DOPE! So Puff Daddy decided to drop this MMM (Money Makin’ Mitch) mixtape, and a forthcoming sequel to No Way Out, before turning his de facto retirement into an official retirement. Apparently, music has been holding him back from moving on to the next thing that God has destined for him. Coulda fooled me…
In case you can’t tell from my attitude, I’m not impressed. MMM is supposed to be Puff’s reinterpretation of the story of real-life kingpin Richard “Rich” Porter, known as Money Makin’ Mitch in the stupendous Paid in Full movie. In this mixtape, instead of being murdered by his deceitful partner, Mitch leaves drugs, and uses his business skills to build a legitimate life and fortune. If you’re a cynic, like me, this premise looks like an excuse for Puffy to re-engage the fly gangster persona of his early career. But, since that was his best era, the idea sounds good on paper. Unfortunately, the magic of that era is missing from MMM, along with its ghostwriters.
Because Mitch had an abundance of style, MMM’s most thematically cohesive songs exhibit a smoothness that’s reminiscent of not only No Way Out but also Jay-z’s Reasonable Doubt. But there’s only a few of these songs before Puff loses his way. At Future’s 8th mumble of “money makin mitch” over the slog of a beat that’s used on MMM, I knew that this tape would only continue downhill. It’s like Puff Daddy can’t decide if he wants to make classic Bad Boy music or recreate everyone else’s 2015 sound. The only song that I like a lot is Money Ain’t a Problem, which sounds a LOT like French Montana’s music (he’s featured) and samples/reuses the sample from Lost Boys’ Renee. So yeah, it’s a good song. But it doesn’t belong here at all.
I’ll embed whatever the hell I want!
Besides the wildly inconsistent sound, what’s most frustrating is that this premise could have been done much better. Imagine a concept album that actually tells Mitch’s life story but this time with a happy ending that draws from Puff’s current super-rich life. Instead, this mixtape is a collection of random-ass drug talk (so of course there’s a bleh Jadakiss feature) and opulent boasts. Puff (Puff’s writers? Is it rude to keep pretending his ghostwriters don’t exist?) told stories on No Way Out, on songs like Is This The End? and I Love You Baby. MMM just goes nowhere fast. I wouldn’t say that it’s terrible, but it’s very much unnecessary. To make a body of work that can stand up to his past, Puff needs a much better team of writers, and the cohesion of his past music. Let’s hope he puts a lot more work into No Way Out 2.
- Money Ain’t a Problem ft French Montana (makes much more sense as a French solo song)
- Workin ft Big Sean & Travis Scott (the vibe is good, the verses though…not so much)