You Asked for It: Fetti Profoun

By Niki D’Andrea

Every week, I’ve been reviewing a local CD in this “You Asked for It” blog (please click the link and visit the original blog for details). If you’re a musician from the Phoenix metro area and would like to submit a CD for review, please send it in an envelope marked “YAFI” to:

Niki D’Andrea c/o Phoenix New Times 1201 E. Jefferson Street Phoenix, AZ 85032

This week, I’m reviewing the new album by Phoenix hip-hop artist Fetti Profoun. I reviewed his debut CD back in 2006, which I called “one of the most impressive local hip-hop debuts in years.”

So…sophomore slump for Fetti, or did he outdo himself? Read on.

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Fetti Profoun My Conviction (Paper Chase Records) Let’s start off on a positive note: Fetti Profoun is an immensely talented rapper, capable of spitting 16 witty bars that could dust most competitors at MC battles. And the instrumentation and production here is stellar, from the smooth sitar sample that drives the song “Blue Skies” to the sexy saxophone sample looped throughout “My Symphony.” However, there has been little progression as far as Fetti’s lyrical content: My Conviction is an apt title, because (like his debut album) this record is packed with confessional, struggling-in-the-streets songs set to ballad beats. In fact, my biggest gripe with this album is that by track four, I’m already sick of hearing Fetti rap about how he’s barely getting’ by, can’t pay his bills, works so hard and just wants some respect, etc., etc. My second biggest gripe is the distorted, helium-voice effect that pops up in a handful of songs. The track “Where Did I Go Wrong” starts off strong, with a nice jazz piano loop and smooth groove, but then the warbled vocal sample (meant to be the song’s hook, I assume) starts bleeding through the choruses and detracts from the track. The same helium-voice invades “Twenty Four” (where it’s set alongside samples from speeches by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.) and “What I Feel.” The latter is one of the most lyrically strong tracks on the album, with lines like “I guess you could say I was blessed with a curse/’Cause I murder a verse and can’t pay rent on the first.” If it weren’t for the “munchkins are stalking me across 8 Mile” vibe caused by the helium singing, the track could almost be a (gasp!) single. Another song packed with potential is “Long Time Coming,” where Fetti lays down some local pride over a soulful groove pulled from ‘70s R&B: “Arizona’s on my backside/I’ma ride ‘till the wheels fall off like my last ride.” Of the whopping 17 tracks here, at least half show a clear progression from his debut.

Next week's review: Slut Sister.

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