Album Review | Jay Cinema – Out the Loop

This album was released on January 8th this year. Jay Cinema released a pretty good album with WilfMerson at the beginning of 2021, and I’m hoping this latest project is even better. He also dropped a project with a producer named FROwNS in May last year, which was okay. I definitely prefer What You Need Ain’t What You Want! though. That’s still my favorite project from him. My hope is that this latest album will change that, but I’m not gonna set my expectations too high.

The album begins with the title track, Out the Loop, which features a genuinely amazing beat from Achille. I’ve always liked Achille’s production, but I wasn’t expecting to hear anything this good from him to be honest. It’s a really pretty, jazzy instrumental. I think it’s dope af. I’m pleased to say that it sounds like Jay Cinema has improved since the last time I reviewed his work too. His flow is much more impressive, and the lyrics are more interesting too.

I been out the loop
Just me, myself, and solitude trapped in a silent room
This not rap, just the honest truth
People I know say I'm famous, really I'm a common dude
I been getting anxious, feelin' like I ain't shit
These years been takin' a toll, feel ancient

The song is short as hell, so there’s just time for one quick verse before it ends. I probably would’ve liked it more if it was a bit more fleshed out, but what’s here is really good. I think the song is dope. The 2nd track is called Sani Grill, and it has another great instrumental from Lord Glacier. I enjoyed the verse from Jay on this track too.

Not the same man I once was
Take baby steps, but I still grow some
Ran before I walked, jogged before I crawled
Always think before I talk, indecisive
Take my pain, put it in my writin’
I be quiet, searchin’ for a meaning in a life that’s not exciting
Short sighted dealing with a crisis
Knuckles bloody, but we still fighting

The lyrics aren’t amazing or anything, but they’re much more interesting than what appeared on the WilfMerson collab in my opinion. I like the vocal sample that comes in for the outro of this song. This isn’t one of my favorite tracks on the album, but I definitely enjoyed it enough to return to it in the future. I think it’s pretty good. Track 3 is called All the World, and it’s got a pretty nice beat from A Haunted House. It’s definitely my least favorite beat up to this point on the record, but I still like it to some extent. The first verse from Jay on this track is pretty relatable, and I appreciate how this song actually has a hook, unlike the first couple of tracks. It’s a pretty simplistic hook, but I think it’s better than nothing. Both of the verses on this track are solid, and I like the production. It’s a pretty good song overall. It’s followed by Windwishing, which features production from pis.i. The beat is really goddamn great. I love it. This is actually another one of the better tracks on the album in my opinion. There’s just one verse from Jay here, but it’s pretty good.

Trapped in a self-made prison, keep my feelings hidden
Understand that's the wrong move, crying not the same when you grown
Nowadays I'm only happy when I'm home in my safe space
Not in a great place, you can hear it in my cadence
Patience thinning, basic living hard to acquire
Shit not the same, what happened to my fire?
Day by day, having less desire for my passions
Speaking less to my friends, more time alone
Plenty highs, having more lows

I find the lyrical content pretty relatable. The song’s pretty short, but I don’t even mind the brevity since the production is so good, and I dug the verse. I think the song’s dope. The following track is called Walk, and it features another fantastic instrumental from pis.i. The beat is a lot more lighthearted, but the lyrical content is still pretty heavy.

Haven't been taking care of myself, not living healthy
My room is full of memories that I keep tucked away
Certain shit that fucked me up to this day, can't face 'em
Tracin' my steps, so I can figure out where it went left for me
Been focused on saving my energy

His flow sounds a little awkward at certain points, but I still really enjoyed this track. It’s another really short song, so there’s only one verse, but I liked it overall. I think it’s a pretty good song. Track 6 is called A Message, and it has another beat from pis.i. The beat isn’t as phenomenal as the previous couple of instrumentals from pis.i in my opinion, but it’s still pretty good. I think the verse from Jay Cinema here is pretty nice too. Once again, the song is very short, so there’s just one verse before the track ends.

My mind, my heart, my soul, they're in a constant battle
I be tryna stay balanced, but I'm always rattled
I find it difficult to trust niggas, I be talkin' to my shadow
And sorry for my lack of personality, what can I say, baby? I'm just shallow
I'm stuck in these waters, and I know I need a paddle
When my feet won't move, I'm sinking quickly
Me and depression, best believe we got some history
Makin' these songs, wondering if niggas will miss me

I really appreciate how Jay Cinema wears his heart on his sleeve in every verse. He’s pretty easy to relate to. This isn’t one of my favorite tracks on the album, but I definitely enjoyed it overall. I think it’s pretty good. The next track is called Foolish Thing, and it’s got another one of my favorite beats on the album from Ridgy. I think Jay’s flow on this track is slightly better than it was on some of the preceding tracks.

I'm 22, not spending my life working for white man
I'd rather work on my pen 'til the very end
All this pressure I'm in, yo, I'm drenched in stress
It's whatever, bench pressing my depression
Fucks with me for a second, then it's on to the next
Ponder and reflect, I wonder if I'll ever care less
Got my eyes low on this long quest
Can't afford to rest, barely payin' rent

Just like with most of the other songs, there’s just one verse with no hook or bridge. It’s a pretty short song, but I don’t really mind the brevity too much. I think it’s pretty good overall. The following track is called Souvenir, and it has another one of my favorite instrumentals on the album from pis.i. I honestly wouldn’t mind hearing a whole collaborative project between Jay Cinema & pis.i because I really love his beats on this album. The first verse from Jay on this track is pretty nice too.

This my second wind
Used to losin', feels weird when I win
I'm a bad person, cuttin' off my friends
In the lab workin', it's just me, myself, and the pen
I don't got shit but a heavy heart
And a fucked up brain that helps me make my art

This is one of the few tracks on the album with an actual hook. It’s not amazing or anything, but it’s just nice to have a more fleshed out song structure. This is another one of the better tracks on the album in my opinion. I think it’s dope. The penultimate track is called Chest, and it’s got a pretty great beat from A Haunted House. Once again, there’s just one verse from Jay on this track, but it’s pretty good. It’s not too different from any of the other tracks lyrically, which may or may not be a good thing depending on your perspective. I don’t mind personally. I like that this album has consistent themes. I think the song is pretty good overall. The closing song is entitled Chillout (Just Breathe!), and it has more production from pis.i. This song has the weirdest, glitchiest beat on the album, and I really like it. I actually think this track has Jay’s best flow on the whole album. This is another one of the few tracks with an actual hook too, which I think is pretty good. Honestly, there’s nothing about this song that I don’t like to some extent. I really like how the beat gets pitched down for the outro. This track is dope.

This is a good album. Based on what I’ve heard, I think this is Jay Cinema’s best work. None of the tracks really blew me away, but it’s just a very consistent project. There’s not a single song here that I don’t like. I think the production is pretty goddamn good, and, like I said in the body of this review, I appreciate how there’s a consistent theme when it comes to the lyricism. The themes of uncertainty and the pain of growing up are definitely relatable to me. As I said before, I appreciate how Jay wears his heart on his sleeve in every single verse that he spits. I’m glad I enjoyed this project, and I look forward to hearing more from Jay Cinema in the future. This album is dope.

Favorite Song: Out the Loop
Least Favorite Song: All the World


Grade: B-

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