50 Cent looks stressed on the cover of Curtis. Is he worried he left the stove on? Or is this the face a rap megastar makes when he's reached an artistic crossroads?
50 is back with his larger-than-life persona and even bigger Mack 11, remaking his classic first album for the second time, with tiresome results.
You feel like you've already heard this record, because 50 dropped a quarter of it (four lacklustre singles) before its release. Also, a few of these songs seem consciously based on ones from his last albums: My Gun Go Off repeats Gunz Come Out over a beat almost identical to Gatman And Robbin; Follow My Lead redoes 21 Questions; and Amusement Park is Candy Shop set at Disneyland. Letdown central: the singles are also the best beats on Curtis.
Otherwise, 50 flips to autopilot with typical talk about being a felon, a killer, a hustler, a pimp and a gun owner. Listening hard for anything more substantial will just exhaust you.