Andy Mineo (min-ee-oh) is at it again. Typically I would be concerned when an artist releases two albums nine months apart. Questions like “Is this a B-Sides?” or “Are they going for quantity over quality?” come to mind. Perhaps I’m just a pessimist. Regardless, I’ll admit I’m a Mineo fanboy at this point, so when I found out the album was coming out I was stoked.
This album has a much more laid back vibe than “Formerly Known” or “Heroes for Sale.” “Never Land” seems like a labor of love from the vibe of the overall tracks to the title and album artwork.
“‘Hook’ was one of my favorite movies when I was growing up, so we played with that theme on the title ‘Never Land.’ We sort of just played with the imagery, too.” Andy Mineo (TheBoombox.com)
Tracks like “Paisano’s Wylin,” make me feel like this album was fun too. As I listen I feel like I’m in the studio hanging out with dudes who love music and who want to have a good time. That is not to say every song is an elaborate celebration of Italian culture; there is a lot of heart on this album. Mineo covers issues of disappointment, pride, inner battles, buying into lies, and even shares his testimony with the listener on the track “Rewind.” Just because this album is laid back does not mean that Mineo doesn’t spit fire on several tracks. Tracks like “Never land,” “You Can’t Stop Me,” and “Paganini” showcase Andy’s speed combined with lyrical depth.
This seven track EP includes an impressive roster of emcees and vocalists: Marz, Kam Parker, KB and Canon to name a few. With a length of 33:01, it’s well worth the money.
One thing’s for sure: Andy is here to stay. The “Never Land” EP hit number 2 on iTunes and number 1 on iTunes’ Hip Hop/Rap chart. The people have spoken and Andy’s place in the hip hop scene is secure. As great as that is, the track “Death of Me” shows the inherent danger that comes as a result of his new found popularity. We should be happy for Andy but we should also be praying for him.
“Jesus retreated to speak with his Father
I know that I need it, My career been growing
But tell me where I’m going if my time with God is depleted (Nowhere)
God, I’m sorry, I mean it, All I want to do is walk with you but
My priorities wrong, I talk about you more than I talk with you”
This album does not hit quite as hard as his previous releases, but nonetheless, you’ll be playing it on blast for days and singing the hooks in the shower. It’s time to jump on the Mineo train.