- Associated Press - Monday, June 8, 2015

Yelawolf, “Love Story” (Interscope/Shady Records)

Yelawolf is out with his third studio album, “Love Story,” a well-produced if unremarkable effort on Eminem’s label hinged around a rap-sung revelry of southern Americana.

The Alabama-based rapper has been on the cusp of rap success for a few years and the common wisdom that Eminem’s backing would put him into brighter spotlights has proven true. But “Love Story” doesn’t deliver any truly memorable tracks to the larger audience Yelawolf now enjoys.

Yelawolf remains an easy equation. He delivers just enough lyricism to maintain his rap cred with enough twangy crossover guitar for interloping rap fans. “Change” is a perfect example: The track about life’s crossroads has decent lyrics, but remains saddled with a lazy pace and uninventive guitar. “Empty Bottles” is similarly bereft of energy.

Yelawolf is at his best when sharing microphone time with Slim Shady himself on “Best Friend.” But frankly that’s like inviting Lebron James to a neighborhood shoot around. It merely affirms that Yelawolf’s got a lot of work to do.

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Follow Ron Harris at twitter.com/Journorati

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