Never the most technically gifted MC, Young Jeezy has built a career out of transforming apparent weaknesses into formidable strengths. Jeezy has clearly taken Nas’ legendary injunction “it’s not what you do but how it’s done” to heart and reinterpreted it as “it’s not what you say but how you say it.” Jeezy never strays far from the by now all too familiar southern tropes of keys, whips and girls, but his roaring, often cavernously multi-tracked delivery ensures that the proceedings remain riveting. On The Inspiration he varies little from the reliable template that made him a star with tracks like the ubiquitous “Soul Survivor”. Yet The Inspiration differs from Thug Motivation 101 in one important respect: the tempos. On tracks like the ghostly “Hypnotize” and the stuttering “J.E.E.Z.Y.” tempos are slowed to a dolorous crawl that nods towards Houston’s screwed and chopped aesthetic while invoking the slow-motion wooziness of the best Three Six Mafia productions. The Inspiration’s syrup-slow tempos fit Jeezy’s emphatic yet stuttering delivery perfectly, lending the album a sense of creeping dread that is as compelling as it is difficult to forget.