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Ruff Ryders' First Lady

Beautiful, ex-table dancer made good, mate of [a]DMX[/a] and now '[B]First Lady[/B]' of America's favourite hip-hop hit factory...

Big things are going to happen. Beautiful, ex-table dancer made good, mate of DMX and now 'First Lady' of America's favourite hip-hop hit factory the Ruff Ryders, Eve's got it made.



On this, her debut solo release, she's bridging the gap between Lil' Kim and Lauryn, but coming out - mercifully - with a style all her own.



As the job of 'Ruff Ryders' First Lady' demands, she's as rude and raw as the rest of them, but with an almost angelic touch that's demonstrated to perfection on the hard-as-nails/sweet-like-chocolate 'Let's Talk About'. To the Missy Elliott faithful, mind, and all those with just a passing interest in the hip-hop genre, Swizz Beatz's jerky, schizophrenic production may grate, simply for the fact that it's 'heavily influenced' by Timbaland's ground-breaking style.



But Jay-sus, even Eternal are trying to sound like Missy now, and for that, Swizz is well within his rights to build on the 'ticka ticka tock' beat that's changed the course of R&B forever. Eve's part-time mentor DMX drops in on '...First Lady' with another round of throaty boasting on 'Dog Match' and 'Scenario 2000', as does Missy on one of the album's many highlights 'Ain't Got No Dough'. Luckily though, Eve doesn't have to ride on the coat-tails of her celebrity friends, because the girl's got an undoubtable star quality of her own.



With rap careers getting shorter by the week, the sweet-and-sour peroxide "pit bull in a skirt" looks like she's here to stay.
7 / 10

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