The original members of Three 6 Mafia, excluding Juicy J, have reincarnated themselves as "Da Mafia 6ix" and released one of the best mixtapes I've heard this year thus far: 6ix Commandments.
The mixtape begins with the bass-filled, DJ Paul-produced “Go Hard,” which features Shady Records signee Yelawolf. It’s a perfect way to start the project off. Over the hard-hitting track, the group delivers solid verses in a style that's reminiscent to the way they did in the 90s.
But that appears to only be the beginning of a well put-together installment.
The track is followed by the dope boy-satisfying “Beacon N Blender” and the trunk rattling “Been Had Hard,” which is one of my favorite cuts on the mixtape.
The group also revisits their classic track "Break Da Law" on 6ix Commandments. The initial track was released nearly two decades ago, and since then there’s been several versions created but this is hands down one of the best I’ve heard. The transitions in the beat, samples, and turntable scratches are a perfect match for the group's dark, horrorcore-esque verses.
Another highlight on the mixtape is “Murder On My Mind.” The track features underground Florida sensation SpaceGhostPurrp, Hypnotize Minds affiliate JGrxxn, and legendary, tongue-twisters Krayzie Bone and Bizzy Bone. Similar to other tracks on the mixtape, it incorporates samples of sounds that were used on Triple 6 records during their heyday. But there's a refreshing feel to it that brings it up to speed, perfect for 2013.
The group reconnects with past Hypnotize Minds comrade Lil’ Wyte on the mixtape as well with the tracks “Betta Pray” and “Remember.” And Memphis rap legends 8 ball and M.J.G. make appearances on “Yean High.” Around the 3:40 mark of the song, it breaks down and transitions into a totally different beat that is doper than the original track it started with. It gives off that vintage, 90s feel that Hypnotize Minds is so popular for.
The project culminates with "Body Parts," a multi-featured, nine-minute long track similar to the HCP posse cuts that fans could look forward to on every album released by Hypnotize Minds. Juicy J, who's been pursuing his solo career through Wiz Khalifa's Taylor Gang imprint lately, unexpectedly starts the track off with a savage verse in a style that's relatively-similar to his Juice Man days. Past HCP members Kingpin Skinny Pimp and La Chat also appear on "Body Parts," along with Project Pat, Lil Wyte, Houston underground legend Point Blank, JGrxxn, and Kokane and Locodunit—who are both artists on DJ Paul's Scale-A-Ton label.
All in all, 6ix Commandments, to me, is more than a solid effort from the group that had everybody screaming "Tear Da Club Up!" and sippin' on sizzurp back in the day. It's a reminder of who is responsible for that crunk, dark, and 808-ridden sound that's been embraced by so many up-and-coming rap artists and producers these days. Gangsta Boo, Koopsta Knicca, Lord Infamous, Crunchy Black, and DJ Paul all contribute some of the best verses I've heard from them in recent years. And the mixtape's production, primarily provided by DJ Paul, is pretty much flawless in comparison to the bulk of mixtapes that have entered my eardrums lately.
The only thing that doesn't sit well with me is the promotion of satanism on the project. As a youngster, I was more impressionable and idolized the group, so the countless references of "666" and other satanic remarks were overlooked easily. Now an adult and more in-tune with my mind and spirit, it's hard for me to act oblivious to things like that. But what do you expect from members once a part of a Platinum-selling group known as Three 6 Mafia?
Aside from disliking some of the content on 6ix Commandments, I think the mixtape is jammin'. And although your opinion may differ from mine, I think one thing that all listeners can agree to is that this is a solid release from the bulk of one of rap music's most prolific, trendsetting, and prosperous groups. The mixtape is unquestionably worth checking out and serves as an awesome reestablishment for
Three 6 Mafia Da Mafia 6ix.
Check out the video for Da Mafia 6ix's "Go Hard" below.