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Various Artists Tony Touch: Last Or The Pro-Ricans

First of all, let it be known that Tony Toca, a.k.a. Tony Touch, the Taino mixtape king, is down by law. Even when he had an artist deal on now-defunct Tommy Boy, he kept it real on the streets, circulating his mixes like oxygen throughout the Five Boroughs. Secondly, Touch has actual rhyming skills, distinguishing him from the legion of mix tape-mongers who bark out the same tired phrases (DJ ________ is on the mix! "Holla!") way too often. But though Touch can hold his own, on the microphone, with the likes of Noreaga and the Beatnuts, Last of the Pro-Ricans is far from a classic effort. The song selection is tragically limited, with lots of thuggy, heavy-on-the-fronting East Coast rap that all starts to ooze together after a while. For what it's worth, Touch and fellow Boriqua DJ icon Doo Wop pull off their star turns as the Diaz Brothers on "G'z Up," but other than that and a new Gangstarr joint, there's not much to recommend here. The first five times it maybe sounds OK, but it soon becomes an annoying one-trick pony, Tony.

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