Ace Hood is, in a way, a test subject for the whole dubious premise that DJ Khaled is some kind of tastemaker (or at least, any more of a tastemaker than any drivetime radio DJ in a major city). Fact is, he's a guy who's spent the last 3 years building an empire off of the work of MCs and producers who were already very successful before he did anything with them, and aside from managing the Runners and helping to break Rick Ross's first hit, he doesn't really deserve any credit for their success. So when Def Jam gave him an imprint for, god knows why, other than name recognition, he probably realized that all the rappers he knows are already signed, and had to set about finding some unknown get to throw on a bunch of Runners and T-Pain tracks. And to his credit, he could've done a lot worse than Ace Hood. In fact, he might be the best MC out of the whole new school of Florida radio rappers (OK, being better than Plies and Flo Rida is not a huge accomplishment, but still).
But what sounds impressive in short bursts on "Cash Flow" and random Khaled posse cuts inevitably wears pretty thin over the course of Ace Hood's debut album, Gutta, and after a pretty strong opening cut, "I Don't Give A Fuck," even the good stuff eventually becomes wearying. And really, there's not that much good stuff. On the Drumma Boy-produced "Get Em Up," Ace spends the entire song biting Jeezy's "Put On" flow in the most unimaginative way possible, even using a lot of the same rhymes, while on "Stressin'," he bases his flow off of the hook by Plies (which doesn't even sound like a hook so much as a random 4 bars from Plies verse looped up), and both tracks make a MC who usually seems almost too polished and competent sound like a rank amateur, which he pretty much still is, since he barely got called up to the big leagues a year ago.