Album Preview: Fat Joe – ‘The Elephant in the Room’

Leaning back on a broader audience after the last couple of explosive singles, Fat Joe is ready to hit the scene again—and he intends to be the topic of conversation. “I am going to be that elephant in the room, ” he says, his dimples implying an air of mischievous confidence. “I’m here in hip-hop and you won’t be able to ignore me.”

We’ll find out if his prophecies become truth on March 11th, when his eighth album, The Elephant in the Room, drops. Until then, here’s Rap-Up.com’s track-by-track rundown.

1. “The Fugitive”
Produced by Street Runner

With blaring sirens, obvious police drama in the background, and immediate verbal threats, there’s no question that Joe is demanding attention with this opener. It’s a tougher sound that you’d anticipate hearing after his first radio single.

2. “Ain’t Nothing” featuring Dre of Cool & Dre
Produced by Cool & Dre

“If it ain’t about money…” This is the first of a couple of potential club bangers on the album, displaying Joe’s signature playful swagger. This one’s like many of Joe’s catchy hooked singles.

3. “The Crack House” featuring Lil Wayne
Produced by Steve Morales

Just what you’d expect from a collabo between Joey Crack and his proclaimed favorite rapper. Crazy rhymes and tight delivery on both parts over an underwhelming beat—the perfect combination for a potential follow-up single.

4. “Coca Baby” featuring Jackie Rubio
Produced by Danja Handz

Joe named this as his favorite track on the album. Upbeat, rhythmically focused, and blessed with an easy tempo, this one’s got strip club potential. Make it rain all over again?

5. “Get It For Life” featuring Pooh Bear
Produced by DJ Khaled

Throwin’ it back to the ’80s, this one is on “some George Michael shit,” as Joe put it. Speeding beats set off a nightrider vibe with a less than superior flow.

6. “Drop” featuring Swizz Beatz and Jackie Rubio
Produced by Swizz Beatz

Swizzy hits us off with one of his distinct sounds that’s inevitably going to make ’em bounce like his signature hydraulic singed beats. Definitely more gimmicky; this track might even come with its own dance if this was a Dirty South affair.

7. “I Won’t Tell” featuring J. Holiday
Produced by Sean C. and LV

This one’s currently burning up the airwaves. With J.’s smooth vocals and sexy mid-tempo flow, this was a sure shot for an attention-grabbing first single. You know how it goes—get the ladies on the dance floor first and everything else will fall into place.

8. “KAR”
Produced by Street Runner

An acronym for “Kill All Rats,” this track boasts the most confident delivery, with meaningful verses. A tribute to the ones “locked down,” Joe pays homage to the hustle and all its repercussions.

9. “300 Brolic” featuring Opera Steve
Produced by Sean C. and LV

Backed by a thunderous beat, this joint could be the background to an Apocalyptic flick. One of the grittier songs on the album, Joe reverts back to a street mentality, switching content from fly girls to flashy guns.

10. “Preacher on a Sunday Morning” featuring Pooh Bear
Produced by Scott Storch

Storch doesn’t measure up to his rep on this track, where the rhymes are decent but essentially overpower the weak, cliché beat.

11. “Thank God For That White”
Produced by DJ Premier

With a beat that takes you back to the Bronx in the days of hip-hop’s childhood, it’s one of the most seasoned backdrops on the playlist. Crack reminisces on the gutta and glory of his home territory.

–Rajul Punjabi in New York