MIAMI — Lloyd Banks, famous for songs like “On Fire” and “Hands Up,” is making his return to rap and the mainstream with his new hit single “Beamer, Benz, or Bentley,” featuring Juelz Santana. The record is off his upcoming album tentatively called â€˜he Hunger for More 2 and has received an overwhelmingly positive response, having made its way into New York’s Hot 97 radio rotation only a week after its release and after shooting the music video. MTV Jams premiered the song March 15 to a national audience.
Banks has been out of the spotlight as a solo act for nearly four years since the release of his sophomore album Rotten Apple in 2006. He has since been dropped from Interscope records.
In 2008, as a founding member of G-Unit, Banks was featured on every song alongside G-Unit cohorts 50 Cent and Tony Yayo on the group’s sophomore album Terminate on Sight. The album received lukewarm reviews and had lackluster sales. T.O.S was best known for the single “Rider pt 2.” The spotlight — and the public’s attention — appeared to be moving away from G-Unit, Lloyd Banks, and even 50 Cent in what looked like a trend shift.
After 50 Cent’s fourth album, Before I Self Destruct, failed to meet expectations, people began questioning whether the era of gangster rap was finally coming to an end.
Despite his lack of a solo major label release over the past few years, Banks has continuously put out music for his diehard fans and mix tape circuit junkies who still refer to him as the PLK, or “punchline king.” The ambitiously titled 5 and Better Series mix tapes started in late 2008 with Vol 1 Return of the PLK and have created the momentum needed for his return to the spotlight.
In December of 2009, Banks released the self-titled fifth edition to the mix tape series, V, featuring such songs as “Big Bully,” and “Rather Be Me.” For the first time, he was opening up and talking, rapping, about G-Unit’s apparent downfall and disputes with other rappers. Acknowledging that things have changed, Banks confidently maintains that G-Unit isn’t going anywhere in one of the mix tape’s highlight tracks “We Remain.”
On January 10, while in Toronto for a concert, Lloyd Banks was arrested for assault. He was later extradited and released, but with media outlets like MTV, Rapradar, and even Perezhilton covering the story, people began discussing Lloyd Banks’- for better or for worse. With the success of V and the media attention received from his incarceration, Banks thought it was the perfect opportunity to make his calculated return.
Since the release of “Beamer, Benz, or Bentley,” Banks has gone on a media blitz, doing interviews with anyone who requested them. Some of the interviews were with media such as 1515, MTV’s Mix tape Daily, and XXL show. Banks is poised to make a heartfelt return to rap, claiming that he is what the game has been missing.
The Hunger For More 2 has yet to receive a release date and will be released independently through iTunes, although it is clear the people over at G-Unit records hope to find a distribution deal after the album’s first single made such an impact.