With a some refinement, David Banner could be the next Kanye West. [rssbreak]
But, instead, the talented and very likable Black Hulk only succeeds as a one-dimensional club rapper. His two biggest and best hits, for instance, are about aggressive pimping (Like a Pimp) and giving women orgasms in dance clubs (Play).
On The Greatest Story Ever Told, his focus is still on writing those hooky, unenlightened club bangers. Occasionally Banner shows signs of West's flashes-of-brilliance early work, like on Shawty Say and single Get Like Me (Stuntin is a Habit), but nothing comes close to a coherent song. A bad decision - like inviting out-of-place Snoop Dogg on the otherwise solid Akon-assisted 9mm/Speaker - seems to lurk in every cut.
What will confound listeners most, though, is Banner's already-tired embrace of the contradiction: he warns Southern blacks about falling into negative stereotypes and talks of children needing strong male role models, but then uses several tracks to say Fuck You Hoes over and over and rap extensively about a sadomasochistic threesome.
But that's not where the album fails, because even those willing to look beyond his preaching/posturing are still stuck with substandard rap. Like his career, Banner produces a few Southern rap gems (Ball With Me, K.O., 9mm/Speaker), but as a whole he's only barely listenable here.