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Horseshoe G.A.N.G., Ambitions Az A Writer

West Coast representatives Horseshoe G.A.N.G. are probably best known for their affiliation with Crooked I and the Circle of Bosses (C.O.B.) camp. The group, comprised of Demitrius Capone, Julius Luciano, Kenny Siegel and Andrew “Dice” Dinero have been looking to break through by bringing an aggressive, in your face approach with battle rhymes and punch-lines du jour. Their latest mixtape, Ambitions Az A Writer (a play on and homage to the 2Pac’s classic “Ambitionz Az A Ridah”), boasts the crew firing fierce lyrics and in a way, Horseshoe G.A.N.G looks to do Pac proud on this one.

Unlike most mixtapes, Ambitions Az A Writer is more of a 17 track cipher. Every cut is punchline-heavy and finds the MCs competing for the top spot on wax against one another (very Slaughterhouse-esque). Production wise, there isn’t much, as Ambitions finds the G.A.N.G. running through popular instrumentals first rapped on by artists like Big Sean, Nicki Minaj, J. Cole, Kendrick Lamar and Kanye West. Fans of thought-provoking and witty punchlines will enjoy Ambitions Az A Writer, with tracks of note such as “Shoot Game” and “Right Amount of Wrong.” The tape relies on the strength of the rappers to carry it, rather than the beats, and the foursome put their skills on display with the standout track “Team 6,”, the project’s high point.

While the group’s lyrical prowess is not in question, Ambitions does drag on. Rhyming over other people’s instrumentals has its creative limitations and though they can rhyme, the G.A.N.G. drops cringingly bad hooks on many tracks. The 17 tracks become tiring towards the tail end of the release, as the mixtape becomes more of a marathon (it clocks in at nearly an hour and a half). If tracks such as “King Kong,” “No Hoes” and “My Dick’s A Super Hero” were trimmed, the compilation would have been a tighter and more focused release. Yes, Horseshoe G.A.N.G. is lyrically impressive, but the overabundance of punchlines can also become draining and the lack of diversity make the mixtape lose some luster as it winds down.

In the end, Ambitions Az A Writer is a strong release from the West Coast foursome. The group’s lyrical talent is hearty and will continue to be their bread and butter. Some have compared the group to Slaughterhouse and as far as hunger and style, the comparison is fitting. Future releases with more varied production and subject matter will no doubt make the comparison more true to reality. Horseshoe G.A.N.G is a team on the rise and Ambitions Az A Writer is a nice look into the future. —Nene Wallace Reed

  • WTF

    “but the overabundance of punchlines can also become draining and the lack of diversity make the mixtape lose some luster as it winds down.”
    seriously? they’re punchlines and consistent metaphors are very entertaining to listen to because they connect nicely. The lack of diversity is such an overstatement. Find someone that raps like them over Big Sean’s I do it with that same type of flow and rhyme scheme.. but then again this is reviewed by the same idiots who claimed Kanye West started the weekly music series without acknowledging that Crooked I actually started then started a poll, hoping that Kanye would get most of the votes for having the best music serious but the outcome was actually favoring Crooked I and they discontinued the poll…..

    • The187Worm

      Fuck XXL… they all can eat a dick.. hope a fucking plane hits their building.

  • D90

    are you serious? an L?! your saying this mixtape is on par with young buck, maino and chip the ripper, and is of a lesser quality than alley boy, while docking points for constant lyrical wordplay. Idk if xxl has something against these dudes or something but if they cant get a XXL for lyrics, and as such a higher originality rating for the cleverness of the rhymes, idk if anyone can. And i know i sound like im ranting but 9 out of 10 times if the piece of work that the beats they used was reviewed on here im sure the beat was used as a standout, so an M for beats just because they were heard a few times before seems a bit harsh when they were praised no more than a few months ago as being dope… this shoulda been a XL easy

    • 4twenty3sixty5

      now i KNOW you didn’t just say this shits at par with chip.. tell ya friends is probably the most underated mixtape to drop this year. word to the crack head xxl review panel tho.

  • http://fuckxxl.com JD

    what a fucking joke. They slaughtered every beat and you only give them an L? Nene Wallace Reed, you should get that dick out of your ear so you can hear better.

  • YertMan

    LMAO! Since when do HSG punchlines become draining? If you put them up against any, and i mean ANY, group (including Slaughterhouse) they will give them a run for their money…and thats a GUARENTEE!

  • GVLFWVNG

    Oh XXL, What Are We Gonna Do With You….

  • LDOTB

    Though I don’t agree with the “L” rating I do give XXL their props for not totally slamming the group and recognizing them as a talented outfit to be on the lookout for in the future.

  • buckets

    they mad because crook outed them for that hhw fiasco.
    anyways this mixtape should’ve AT LEAST been an XL

  • Sleepy

    I’ve listened to this tape front to back more times than I can count and that’s saying A LOT! I rarely listen front to back to anything now a days. I don’t mind these recycled beats because it’s from artists I don’t listen to anyway so to me they’re new beats.

    I can agree they need work on their hooks. HSG keep doing the damn thing. DJ Far take it easy on the shout outs to yourself. COB ALL DAY!

  • XXLsaJOKE

    XXL, whoever you have doing the reviews needs to suck a fat man’s dick and eat a piece of chode pie…seriously, you idiots need to pay attention, THE STREETS TALK LOUDER THAN YOUR WACK PUBLICATION and apparently y’all the only 1′s who feel they were mediocre…#TEAMSHOEGANG AINT NOBODY IN THE GAME FUCKIN WITH THEM i put $$$ on that

  • triple og

    bullsh*t review this is the best cd ive heard so far this year how you knock points off for having lyrical skill.
    Cant believe the got the same rating as that brrrrr idiot

  • swype-matic

    Any beats that lack on there, HSG brings them up. That’s the difference between rappers with actual skill vs rappers who NEED good beats. This is a NICE mixtape, and honestly do better on those beats than some of the original artists.

  • C-Dub

    this mixtape was probably some of their best material!!!! even though their Firing Squad album was dope….
    everyone checc out youtube.com/jocteevee
    youtube.com/snowblizzardtv

  • TheRealYungDJ

    Clearly a XXL rating should be given i downloaded this thinking it was gonna be alright and this shit blew my fucking mind and you give it a L fuck you XXL with wack ass reviews

  • DEE

    A MUST HAVE FOR EVERY HIPHOP LISTENER…… XXL REVIEWS ARE LAME!!! CHECK IT OUT C.O.B DYNASTY IS A BRAND YOU CAN TRUST…HORSESHOE GANG IS ONE OF THE BEST RAP GROUPS EVER..TRUE MC’S….CHECK OUT THE BOSS BLENDS@ thebossboards.com just sign up for free have instant access to free c.o.b albums

  • RJ

    I agree with damn near every comment that has been posted FUCK YOU XXL

  • Daniel

    You do realize this is a mixtape….you know where they rap over peoples beats and do it for the fans O.o
    fuck this judgment…XXL is falling off huge!

  • Jose

    Oh my God, XXL is fuckin hilarious. An L, seriously? And dissing the lyrics? Jesus, somebody needs to fire this douche bag, LUCKILY XXL isn’t even a factor in Hip Hop anymore because of shit like this. Thanks XXL for being such a shitty publication. Faggets.

  • http://www.POD-ENT.com Adam Anthraxe

    This mixtape goes hard and XXL is trippin on their review.

  • I Shiggy Diggy

    This is the best tape I have ever heard in my life, The fact that people sleep on these monsters just fucking baffles me. hearing 2 chainz Tyga, big sean and meek mill on every goddamn song nowadays…THAT is what’s tiring. XXL seriously needs to get educated.
    L?? I mean Some of Kenny Siegel’s punchlines I could actually feel my fucking pupils dialating. Come on