It is an anomaly in the current state of hip-hop, to run into an MC that can spit 4 minutes straight with no hooks, make sense, all while pleasing the ears. When I learned of Freddie Gibbs in 2014 through his first, Madlib produced album, “Pinata”, it was a breath of fresh air. After beating a bogus case in 2016 that was pinned on him from a random groupie in Austria, and spending 10 (non-guilty) months in an Austrian jail, Gibbs` new tape “You Only Live Twice” expresses his frustration for the legal system and his growing lack of trust towards most people, with the exception of his family. Although the legal system continuously puts this man down, he perseveres and never lets his fans down, recently finishing a U.S. tour this past June in promotion of this project. The project starts with “20 Karat Jesus”, the Pops/ Speakerbomb trap-like instrumental drops hard, followed by the Gary, Indiana based rapper spitting bars in his usual, harsh, Tupac like manner. He makes a lot of references to his “old” life in this project, insinuating that he has made a three-sixty transformation, forcing him to cut off a lot of his past relationships. He has also learned that his “friends” weren`t really who he thought they were. In the last track of the mixtape, “Homesick”, he mentions while he was away from the U.S. in prison, Erica (his baby momma) was the only one to check on him and visit him to make sure he was being treated properly, while his “homies” were at home trying to take what he built. We all learn this lesson one day hopefully, though it’s a tough pill to swallow, but it seems Gibbs` learned the hard way and most probably will be keeping a smaller circle. YOL2wice consisting of only 8 tracks, still managed to have a fairly hype single “Crushed Glass”, which is accompanied by a meaningful music video. My favorite track on this project though, is “Andrea”, first of all, because of the relaxing beat created by Crooklin, SLWJMZ and Pops with a trippy synth sample and captivating bass line. Moreover, what Gibbs is speaking on in the track clearly shows the confliction he seems to have between his new and old lifestyle, not to forget the hilarious voice message in the middle of the song, from his late uncle Big Time Watts (rest in peace) Overall though, this project is one with meaning, emotion and sonically it is great. I hope Gibbs continues to put out raw projects like this and maintains his “realness”, while separating himself from the phonies he mentions on in this project. I can`t wait to hear more from this man, until then this one is on loop mode.