#9 Mixtape Of The Year: Meek Mill- Dreamchasers 3

Posted: December 26, 2013 by ericbernsen in Album Reviews, Music
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The Dreamchasers series of mixtapes have been successful for the Philadelphia street rapper Meek Mill. However, his debut album Dreams and Nightmares fell victim to the timing of Hurricane Sandy, which kept many people on the East Coast unavailable to support Millz (at least for Week 1 sales). The project was also overshadowed by the release of the modern-day “classic” instantly praised album Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City. Despite the hiccup of his debut LP, Meek sounds hungry as ever on Dreamchasers 3 (perfect gym music) and although this project does not offer anything groundbreaking, it is a loud and clear reminder that Millz is one of the last streets-focused rappers to be deservingly  relevant within the mainstream space.

The project opens with the bass heavy “I’m Leanin” that showcases the classic Meek stop and go flow that has become ever so popular in recent years. He is joined alongside the likes of Travis Scott and two of the biggest hip-hop moguls around in Birdman and Diddy. As expected, Dreamchasers 3 has a feature heavy line-up with frequent Meek collaborators such as Rick Ross, Nicki Minaj, and French Montana popping up all over the project. Their appearances are hit or miss, but one guest that stands out with a great contribution is the veteran Jadakiss on “Heaven or Hell”. The track borrows a melody from the classic Luniz record “I Got 5 On It” and while Meek sounds inspired over the solid The Beat Bully production, Jada’s bars are reminiscent of what he sounded like in his prime back in the early 2000’s which is exciting to hear.

However, the one rapper who sadly has the greatest influence on the Dreamchasers 3 is the late Lil Snupe, Meek’s protégé that was murdered at the tender age of 18 years old. Meek places a skit within the mixtape that features a raspy yet inspired freestyle that showcase a kid that was ready to take the rap world by storm. Meek honors his legacy with “Lil Nigga Snupe”, which is laced with a booming beat by Boi-1da. In my mind, this record is Meek Mill at his finest and might be my favorite track out of all of his material. Meek’s raw emotion is on display with a ferocious delivery and his bars are menacing; he genuinely seems like he would give up all the money and fame in the world if he could get his friend back. Meek proves in these special moments that when he is focused, his talent combined with an uncontrollable hunger to be the best can result in a violently truthful yet skillful hip-hop that is largely absent in 2013.

With the power of nostalgia and humble beginnings behind him, Meek reminisces his early days growing up in Philly’s ghetto on “Hip Hop”. The old school drums elevate Meek to a higher state of emceeing we don’t see enough from him with lyrics such as, “The shit I saw, had no choice but to get involved, You either spit it raw, or sell crack and dribble the ball, It’s crazy when I seen my own neighbor hitting the soft, I was thinking in my head like I gotta get with this raw,” that are further enhanced by his hard hitting flow.

Dreamchasers 3 is a project that shows all sides of Meek and while the mixtape has some cliché filler tracks that exist only with the hope they will be picked up club DJ’s, overall it is a solid body of work. Meek is still growing into a more well-developed and multi-dimensional artist who has a natural gift for his vivid storytelling and vocal strength. The standout tracks on Dreamchasers 3 show exactly what Meek is capable of, and we hope to hear similarly well thought out records like “Lil Nigga Snupe” and “Hip Hop” from Philly’s finest on his next album.

Listen to Dreamchasers 3 below and let us know what you think of the review/rating!

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