Still Writing In My Diary: 2nd Entry is the much delayed second release from gruff-voiced North Carolina rapper, Petey Pablo. It’s been nearly 3 years since the release of its predecessor. Petey arrived in 2001 with one of the year’s most memorable summer anthems, Timbaland-produced Raise Up. His new album consists of mainly Southern anthems, similar sex raps, and club anthems.
1) Part 2 The CD starts with an introduction, Part 2, which talks about Pablo’s absence from the game for quite a while, and then leads into an energetic continuation of his first single Raise Up off his first LP. He raps that it’s time to “take them shirts off again” to a catchy trumpet medley with bass accompaniment.
2) Did You Miss Me? (Feat. Baby and TQ, Produced by Mannie Fresh). Consists of Baby and TQ spitting and singing to the pop-style beat, about nothing in particular, while Pablo growls ‘DID YOU MISS ME?’ whenever he feels like it. More annoying than anything else…
3) Jam Y’all (Produced by Lil Jon). Produced by King of Crunk Lil Jon’, this track is a decent club tune. What’s it about? Some inane subject of crunking up the club and whatnot, but it’s pretty good audibly.
4) Freek-A-Leek (Produced by Lil Jon). Pablo’s first single from this CD is “Freek-A-Leek,” – another club hit that talks about how he is going to ‘freek’ all the girls. Rauncy sex lyrics – a bunch of girls (sexily) saying ‘Do you like it daddy?’ with Petey repeating girls’ names over. Quite degrading, yes, but Lil’ Jon adds a grinding beat (although very similar to that he used for Usher’s ‘Yeah’) – another sure hit for the summer.
5) Oh It’s On (Feat. Young Buck) Features Young Buck form G-Unit. Good hypnotic, adrenaline-filled beat with some tight lyrics – Pablo showing some nice rhyming skills. The only downside is the obvious kiss-up to 50 Cent… “You there tough-talking now that 50 got on/Quit fantasin’ ‘bout that man’s life and live your own”.
6) Let’s ROC The beat on this track is good – swaggering and cocky, over a horn with guitar accompaniment, this track represents his home town. Pablo doesn’t say much lyrically, but the song is still quite catchy. Probably one of the ones I would be happy to listen to more than once
7) Stick ‘Em Up This song’s all about Pablo robbing a bank and taking what he wants. Consists of a repeated simple trumpet chord and a simple drum beat. “Put the money in the bag b*tch, before I blow your head off” – Not very exciting, entertaining or interesting.
8) Get On Dis Motorcycle (Produced by Timbaland). With interesting reverse-choir vocal samples lacing this Timbaland-produced track, and with an appearance by Bubba Sparxx, this is definitely a plus on the album, and Petey really shines on the mic.
9) Break Me Off (Feat. Missy Elliot, Produced by Timbaland). Another well produced track – claps underlined with reverse bass, which are featured on most Missy songs, provide a good listen. The downside are the useless lyrics being rapped about. Both Petey and Missy rap about sex and nothing relevant.
10) Boys Bathroom. The track starts off with a horn-driven beat, which changes midway to a bass and clap rhythm. Pablo’s flow is pretty good, but the chorus has him yelling “Get in the boys bathroom!” Immature and not very exciting to listen to.
11) U Don’t Want Dat (Feat. and Produced by Lil Jon). Lil Jon appears and produced this song… and won’t appeal to people who don’t like the King of Crunk yelling on tracks. It’s actually quite a lively track with a catchy hook and the energy is good.
12) What Ya Know About It. Jazzy horns, a funky beat, What Ya Know About It represents Pablo’s home state.
13) I Swear (Produced by Kanye West). Kanye-produced, this track displays Petey’s loyalty to his people. With a soothing guitar melody with bass, Pablo raps about his family. It’s a nice track and a good way to show his genuine love for all his family and friends, but after all those useless, generic lyrics earlier in the CD, it doesn’t have the same effect it could have.
14) Roll Off. One of the better tracks on the album. Without random shouting and so-called ‘crunk’ this song, like the previous I Swear, shows a whole new side to Petey. The lyrical content worth much more than a lot of the earlier simply-club tunes
15) Be Country. A soulful song, talking about the life back down south. Straying away from the violence and sex-laden lyrics of the current commercial rap scene and some of the other songs on this CD, this track is another of the stronger points
16) He Spoke To Me. Consisting of a funk and gospel motivated mixture of sounds and vocals, He Spoke to Me is a song about Petey’s relationship with God. While not an obvious track to be released, it’s probably one of the strongest
17) Vibrate. The album ends with another club hit tune. Popular as a summer anthem, but lacks originality in the lyrics and beat.
Petey Pablo’s Still Writing In My Diary: 2nd Entry is full of a lot of different styles of songs. In some songs he appears as another of the gangster-rappers in hip-hop nowadays. In contrast, on the final songs on the CD, Pablo shows a genuine love for life and his family. It’s these songs he shows his strongest lyrical skills on. Petey Pablo needs to stick to one style of music – mixing club hits with gospel-style choirs will never work, and even Timbaland-stimulated beats can’t stop this diary from being anything more than average.