Artist: Kyle Hubbard

Album: You’re Not That Special

Source: Artist


1. Just Breathe
2. Even Though It Shines
3. Around The Way
4. A Little Infidelity
5. One Time, Two Times (ft. Roosh Williams)
6. Official High
7. A Brief Intermission…
8. It’s Burning
9. Don’t Ask
10. It’s Making Sense
11. Fly Or Die
12. I’ll Be Vindicated


Kyle Hubbard’s 2010 project, Tomorrow In Retrospect, garnered my attention in early 2011.  I didn’t know who he was but somehow I caught wind of the release and I found a whole lot of respect for this Houston emcee and his music.  Hubbard just goes about things differently.  He may live in Houston but his sound embodies  a more global view of hip hop.

He shot me over the release of his latest album, and due to the strength of his last project, I had to listen and comment.   You’re Not That Special contains a lot of Hubbard personally.  It’s an introspective piece of music, more so than his previous record.  He nuances his relationship as a spiritual being, he touches on his past relationships, references the drug market, and his place in Houston.  This is all together a very deep album on a content level.

His first track, Just Breathe, contains so many different quotables, it was really hard to catch up.  He is learning and teaching legitimate life lessons over some Djay Cas production.  Cas’ production almost seems like a movie score or some sort of grand orchestration.  It’s has a lot of sounds going on throughout the course of the music.   That deep production lends itself well to Hubbard’s equally deep lyricism.  For instance:

…there’s nothing left to tell em’ /except victory is hollow, and defeat is overwhelming / Make your choice, but be aware there ain’t no second chances / when the quickest way to lose is to refuse the cards your handed

…if God is there he won’t forsake me because I doubted / No he’ll give me props and pay regard I got this far without him

Deep and real.   This is one of my favorite songs to drop this year, but that’s not all this album has to offer.

Even Though It Shines is another track that really,..well, shines.  Mr. Kooman starts this track off with a good deal of funk, but then incorporates a rock and scratching element in the chorus.  When they suggest that a song moves the crowd, they meant a song like this.  Hubbard’s flow is remarkable.  He speaks on the state of hip hop, from his contemporaries to the audience themselves.  He even remarks on how he took a step back in 2011 to reassess his position in the game.  We should all be glad the man is back.  This song is just the proof in the pudding.

On the Basement Beatz produced joint, A Little Infidelity,  Hubbard discusses those dirty little secrets we keep away from our relationships.  The beat is very energetic and again incorporates a lot of rock and funk sounds.  The song’s topic on other people’s albums may take on a very somber tone, but Hubbard flips the script and takes a very ‘matter-of-fact’ approach. It’s that no pain, no gain mantra.  Check the chorus:

Baby I ain’t trippin’ on the pretty things you telling me /  A heart without a couples scars, a song without a melody / But really what is love without a little infidelity…

The last track I will talk about is the previously noted, It’s Burning.  This song is the one that can be filed under the category of being a ‘banger’.  DJ Corbett (my favorite producer from Tomorrow In Retrospect) does a masterful job in creating some dope sounds around some scathing drums.  Hubbard then, in his own words, sets this bitch on fire.  On this track you hear man who has been going all out to make a name for himself in hip hop only to encounter obstacle after obstacle.  You hear that he is tired of being overlooked and discounted, and this is the type of track that merits everyone’s attention.

There are more than a couple of reasons that one should purchase, You’re Not That Special. There are actually thirteen.  Hubbard uses the thirteen tracks on this album to craft something special and unique for hip hop fans.  What makes it special?  Well, the production is certainly on point, but that’s not what does it.  Kyle Hubbard, himself is the discerning factor.  He has thoughts and dreams just like you and me, but the skill to deliver them in a turn of phrase that we can’t.  He doesn’t stand on punchlines, metaphors, and similes, which is refreshing.   His flow and talent come from intellect, emotion, and respect for the culture.  And to use his own words:

I don’t feel that I’m the best in Houston / But if you try to argue it, I bet that you could prove it

2 thoughts on “Kyle Hubbard – You’re Not That Special (2012)

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