Album: Itz All Love
Benjamin “Watzreal” White is one of the hardest working artists in the Bay Area underground hip-hop scene, with the lyrical skills to match. With the release of his third independently released album Itz All Love, the Berkeley, California bred emcee shows he is not slowing down, and has in fact upped his game creatively with hands down his best work to date.
True the album’s title, the 7 song album (with two bonus tracks) takes listeners on ride (no literally, in the first track, he meets his girl in an Lyft ride lol) through the ups and downs of being in love. The opening track “Lucy Liu & Keanu Reeves” recounts Watzreal falling in love with the leading lady in this love story. In the song talks about his appreciation for his girl holding it down, sacrificing nights alone while he’s out on the road trying to make his career happen; something almost all of us trying to chase our dreams can relate to. It’s clear that Watzreal aka Keanu Reeves loves his Lucy Liu; ending the opening track with the line “it’s all love as long as you love me.”
The next few tracks continue to affirm the love Watzreal has for his Lucy. Lines like “Grown ass little kids watching Scooby-Doo” in the slapper “Go”, or the hilarious tale arguing with your girl while she’s high on ‘shrooms in “U.T.U” demonstrate those great memories of being in a new relationship with someone you enjoy life with. But as in all relationships, things get complicated; then they get fixed, then they get more complicated; and then you make up; then you break up; and then you make up again. All of these emotions are excellently illustrated here by Watzreal on Itz All Love.
Watch the music video for Watzreal's single "Better" off of Itz All Love directed by CSUITEMUISC fam and collaborator Luis Montoya
Production-wise, the beats on this album are stellar. Also much credit to the engineer on this project, as all of the mixes are impeccable and enhance Watzreal’s already solid and unique lyrical and storytelling capabilities. Unlike his previous two projects Wisdom Wit Attitude, and THE: The Human Experience, which were feature heavy, Itz All Love is only has a couple of features, putting Watzreal’s talents at the forefront. That the album is (officially) only 7 cuts deep, makes the project short and sweet, and still allows the emcee to tell a cohesive, authentic, and entertaining story that fans can enjoy.
Overall, Itz All Love is a very good album. It shows Watzreal’s maturity as an emcee and songwriter. As a listener, it gives you enough to leave you satisfied, but it’s good enough that you still want some more. Thankfully there are two bonus cuts on the project that feed that hunger sensation. Itz All Love is the perfect title because it’s clear from this project that this artist truly loves the artform of hip-hop, and like his previous work, this album honors the true essence of the culture: lyricism, authenticity, wittiness, storytelling, and soulful beats. As Watzreal continues to take his fans on his journey, we cannot wait to see where his creative arc leads him next.
Stream the album Itz All Love below on Apple Music, and all other fine streaming services!
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