Gallery Drive Mixtape Review

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Gallery Drive (Ruslan, Afaar, Nomis, Insufficient Funds which is Sinai, TruthBTold and Benjamin D) has honestly taken the hip hop world by storm after releasing their single “Psycho” (which was a smash hit BTW) the group said they’d release their album on Valentine’s Day. What we came to find was another surprise, they did a mixtape to help promote the album. This is more like an album mixtape (ala Scribbling Idiots Idiomatic I and II) same rhymes over industry beats some original stuff. I’m going to be straight up, this is the best mixtape I’ve heard since Idiomatic I period.

First off Shortop mixed the whole project allowing the project to flow very nice and is perfect to listen to in one setting without taking breaks. Second the mixtape starts off with a bang, the opening track is “Hard” using the track that Rihanna and Young Jezzy did and let me tell you Gallery Drive absolutely destroy this track into oblivion.

“Fear” is one of my favorite tracks off of the mixtape, Insufficient Funds is really and I mean really good at writing “heart on your sleeve” rap and “Fear” shows it. Benjamin D and Sinai both talk about heartbreak that they’ve endured in life and how difficult is to deal with. You can just feel the pain that the emcees have been through and it makes the song super-relateable.

Later in the mixtape you actually end up getting what was supposed to be the second single of the crew’s album “Scratching the Surface” the track is called “They Don’t Know” definitely check that out. After that Sinai takes over with a track called “Relax” which surprisingly relaxed me during my study session yesterday. It’s a calm track with a calm beat and lyrics to just let you slow down for a minute and release the stresses that you’re feeling at the moment.

The next track is “Starts With Me” which is an original song and it’s another one of my favorites. The subject: if you really want change we need to do it ourselves by setting an example for the people around us, who are watching our actions believe it or not. All of Insufficient Funds is on this one and they kill this beat encouraging people to not just ask for change but do your part in making it happen.

Everything about this mixtape screams classic and it is, the only thing I didn’t like is that they used a couple tracks from Ruslan’s Mixtape “Write Out Loud” but even that isn’t a big deal because newcomers to Gallery Drive learn about each emcee in the group. The beats are fresh and even the ones that are recycled sound brand new because of the twist that Gallery Drive puts on them. Download the mixtape it’s free! If this is the mixtape the album is guaranteed to blow our eardrums off so get ready!


– industry beats but an entirely new feel to it
– it wasn’t just strung to together just to build hype but there was a lot of work put into this and it’s evident
– Original Trax


– a couple tracks reused from Ruslan’s past mixtape

Rating: 5/5 (Classic Mixtape One Of The Best I’ve Heard).

~ by Michael Stover on March 11, 2010.

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