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Puff Daddy

Forever

  • Bad Boy/Arista

He's a coveted producer and kingpin music mogul, but every once in a while rapper Puff Daddy finds enough time to release his own music.

On his second disc, Forever, he sounds torn between the heavens above and the fire down below.

Filled with images of gangstas and gunfire, the disc also features several tracks with far more spiritual implications. The best of that bunch is “Best Friend,” which not only features Puffy declaring his dedication to Jesus, but also finds him rapping against a musical backdrop of samples from — get this — Christopher Cross' lightweight chestnut “Sailing.”

It's all quite strange indeed, especially given the tone of mob tracks such as the masterfully produced “Angels with Dirty Faces” and lyrical shoot-outs such as the one provided by Puffy with Shyne, G-Dep, Cee-Lo, Busta Rhymes, and Sauce Money on “Reverse.”

Song-wise it's not quite on par with 1997's No Way Out, but there are some impressive guest contributions here, most notably the pairing of Puff Daddy with Jay-Z on the killer cut “Do You Like It...Do You Want It.”

Kevin O'Hare