Reviewed by Tony Cummings
This album is more sung R&B than rapped hip-hop, hence the classification. Cross Rhythms radio listeners will know all about Florida-based Eddy 'Rawsrvnt' Puyol. His "Breathe" was a pioneering entry into the realm of hip-hop worship music while his "No Ordinary Love (Electrocoustic Mix)" got Cross Rhythms airplay in 2010. In his homeland he's probably best known for his appearances on the TV reality series with (of all people) Donald Trump. The one thing Rawsrvnt hasn't achieved though is a top-selling album (at least top-selling on the level of TobyMac and Lecrae). Now with 'Game Changer' there are signs he's getting close as he drops more and more of the rapping in favour of singing (often, of course, with the ubiquitous Mr Auto-tune). The singing emcee has blended hip-hop and R&B pretty well on some tracks, at least on those featuring choice guests Erica Cumbo, reggae gospel man St Matthew and Chinese American rapper Hee Sun Lee. My favourite cuts are the title track, featuring Lil Raskul, and "Go Hard" with Transparent and there are a couple of others which wouldn't be out of place on the CR playlist. Strangely, the flies in the creative ointment are the opener "Fallin' In Love" (ftg Milliyon) with a sung hook "You got me falling in love" which is too banal and repetitive to work, even in this era of Pop Idol trivia. Equally disappointing is the romantic love song "Lost Without U" with a limp, demo quality backing. On the plus side songs dealing with themes like being about the Father's business ("I Go Hard"), opening our eyes to things unseen ("Show Me") and the need to hear the voice of the living God ("Father I Trust Ya") all work well. So Rawsrvnt, keep working away. With better producers courageous enough to tell you when a track, flow or hook isn't up to par, you could deliver a classic album. For the moment though, R&B and hip-hop fans are best advised to listen to 'Game Changer' then buy the best tracks from iTunes.
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