Give Eve credit for not succumbing to hip-hop's fickle feminine fetishisation. While Foxy Brown and Lil' Kim have degenerated into scantily clad clichés, Eve (the self-described "pitbull in a skirt") has maintained her rougher edge without sacrificing a whit of her sexy energy. "Pretty with the heels on, or shitty with the Timbos," is how she puts it on "Gangsta Bitches", one of the standout tracks from Scorpion
, her second album. Eve's clearly progressed as a lyricist, though her flow is occasionally on-the-beat clunky. That aside, she switches easily from anti-hater anthems ("Cowboy") to bitter revenge fantasies (the power-guitar-driven "You Had Me, You Lost Me") to straight-up bragging ("Got What You Need"). Throughout, she's assured and poised, matching Teena Marie's manic torch-song energy on "Life Is So Hard" and outshining most of her Ruff Ryder partners elsewhere. But, secure as she may be, Eve realizes that the game doesn't always last: "I'm trying to make a quick flip, nigga. Can you dig this?" she asks on "Cowboy". Sexy and smart. What's not to dig? --Jon Caramanica
Another Bargain From Barrie's Discs !!!