I happen to be a BIG fan of Ice Cube; he is my favorite rapper apart from Tupac and Biggie. That is why my review of his latest opus has to be as plausible as I can possibly make it - "War and Peace, Vol. 1" is an enjoyable album. It is his most experimental album yet, boasting of mesmerizing guitar-playing and screaming violins, and lovely piano playing as in "Ghetto Vet". And Ice Cube has managed to maintain his strong, authoritative voice and even given his lyrical skill more eclectism. Unfortunately, I miss the old Ice Cube, and this fact deeply affects my review. The War Disc contains less grit and funk than his previous records. Gone is the captivating storytelling, although "Ghetto Vet", one of my favorite tracks on that album, is an exception. Sometimes some songs like "Cash Over Ass" make me feel that Ice Cube has descended into an abyss of materialism that plagues the commercial world of hip-hop today. Remember the socio-political conscious Ice Cube of the early nineties? But I have realized that the hip-hop world of today is different from the one a decade earlier, and just like many, Ice Cube had to change his formula in order to fit in. It is far better than most of those hip-hop releases out there. To me, presently, it is not as good as his previous albums. But probably, after a time of further listening, I might be able to place it on a higher pedestal.