Drankin' Patnaz (So So Def)

Cowslingers CD release party, with Lords of the Highway The Beachland Ballroom, 15711 Waterloo Road 9 p.m. Saturday, September 6, $6, 216-383-1124.
Against Da Grain, the 1999 debut of Atlanta's Youngbloodz (J-Bo and Sean Paul), was a hit in the Dirty South, but never broke out of the region. Now Drankin' Patnaz adds momentum with two songs that were BET staples for months: "Damn" and "Cadillac Pimpin'."

What's exciting is that these catchy anthems are not the two strongest cuts on the album. "Hustle," which probably is the best, rides a two-stepping click track and the considerable vocal presence of Dungeon Family member Killer Mike. The Mello-produced "My Automobile," with its tight horn section, lackadaisical drum shuffle, and high-pitched chorus, invites comparisons to Cee-Lo's crooning and musical outlook.

As drinking songs go, Drankin' Patnaz's joints hold up pretty well. The only thing missing is a greater sense of fun. Yeah, the Youngbloodz are drinking, they're pimping, and it sounds good -- but their rhymes don't convey that thrill the way those of Atlanta's more famous sons do. Maybe this album's incipient success will encourage them to let loose and wild out.

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