Eddie Kaine & Big Ghost Ltd. Invite Y’all to Take the “Last Exit to Crooklyn” (Album Review)

This is the 6th full-length LP from Brooklyn emcee Eddie Kaine. Turning heads at the beginning of the decade off his Big Ghost Ltd.-produced debut A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, the next couple albums Wonderful World of Kaino & Chosen were both moderately received until the Finn-produced Quincy Street Blues marked a return to form for Eddie. But coming off the BP Infinite-produced House of Kaine last fall, Kaine & Big Ghost are linking back up to take the Last Exit to Crooklyn.

“The Wrong Era” opens up shop by bringing a jazzier flare instrumentally so Eddie himself can admit he feels like he’s gettin’ lit in the wrong era giving flowers to those who paved the way like Gil Scott-Heron & Bobby Womack whereas “Reflections” works in some piano chords to get more spiritual than some think he is. “Gylan Kaine” shifts into soulful territory talking about the only goal is to do what they say he can leading into “Chain Walkers” featuring Planet Asia bringing the 2 backed by horns to get in their battle rap bags.

Moving on from there, “Could Never” clashes these somber keys with kicks & snares boasting that he cannot be touched just before “Crooktown” featuring Rim going back & forth with one another perfectly over a rugged boom bap beat sounding better than most of the cuts off their collab EP Meta if I have to be honest with myself here. “To the Pedal” has a warmer approach sonically talking about having his foot on the gas pedal full throttle, but then “Lanier vs. King” featuring Jae Skeese brings back the soul flips referencing Marcus Lanier & Lee King.

“Misery” keeps the chipmunk vocal sampling in tact talking about feelin’ like B.I.G. with all the Versace & Coogie on while “Cutthroat Drills” mixes pianos with kicks & snares getting back on the hardcore tip lyrically. The penultimate track “Roundtable Meeting” featuring Emilio Craig, Odawg, Passport Rav, Rim, Smaccz & Spoda is a cool 4-minute posse cut with a rawly rock-inspired sound just before “All the Above” shows off Eddie’s artistic versatility since he’s singing his heart out during the LP’s final moments.

A lot of the same essence that made A Tree Grows in Brooklyn so personal & relatable had crept it’s way onto Last Exit to Crooklyn, but it’s still very much a different story with new perspectives & some artistic maturity thrown in the mix. Big Ghost’s production is a bit jazzier than last time although the elements of boom bap, chipmunk soul & drumless are still present as Eddie touches on topics & has a true gift for making you feel like that’s your homie from round the simply just talking to you.

Score: 9/10