30 May 2011

Review: Jadakiss, "I Love You (mixtape)"

Jadakiss can rap. I'll go so far to say that you're an idiot if you disagree. It doesn't matter who your favorite rapper is, if you like American hip-hop and rap, then you HAVE to respect Jadakiss' skills. Yes, I said that: you HAVE to respect his skills. Now, you may not put him on a top ten listing but he is held in very high regard by many of the industry's leading producers, artists, magazine editors and head honchos. With that said, he's done it again, and in the form of a solid thank you to his loyal fans by way of a mixtape, "I Love You."

It's a slower mix from J to the muah, but he delivers proudly on many tracks like "Hold You Down," the lead single and "Inkredible Remix" with Rick Ross. Personally I think it all works together, although there is just a tad bit more sedation in the hooks than I would like, as seen on "In The Streets." I'm not surprised, though, especially considering the title of the mixtape.

That being said, he does his usual thing, giving a few singles to the females, and inspiring the streets and young ones, as heard on "Lil Bruh," which is my favorite track on the entire album. It's a great listen, with a simple instrumental under expected Jadakiss vocals. The horns are an excellent touch as well. Is that Pharrell I heard in the hook?

I tend to skip over "How I Feel" since I am not the simping type when it comes to rappers. I like my rappers to have heart, but I don't want to hear love songs on rap albums and/or mixtapes. At least, I don't want to hear love songs that sound like love songs. Ja Rule and 50 Cent killed it for me. There is a teack that I mess with, however, "Gone Too Long." It tells the story of a locked up Jada who is apologetic to his woman at home for the constant lies and half truths that he has fed her over the years about his street life. It's a spin that's been done before, but the vocalist is blessed and very fitting as an accompaniment to Jada's pleas. His ad-libbing is a bit much, though. Despite that, this is probably my second or third favorite track.

For what it's worth, this is a favorable filler until we get another full length album from Jadakiss, as long as he has kept his slow tempo tracks on this effort. For true fans, it is definitely worth a cop. For casual fans, you may want to stick to the lead single "Hold You Down" and "Lil Bruh." 

16 May 2011

Review: Tyler, the Creator "Goblin"

This. Is. A. Very. Weird. Person. I'm not even on the OFWGKTA bandwagon like the youth (it still takes me a minute to remember what the hell that acronym even means) and I have yet to hear a song that they've put out. However, I know who some of the members are (some being Frank Ocean and Tyler, lol) and I've seen numerous articles about them on various blogs and sites, so I'm not completely in the dark. However, after listening to Tyler, the Creator's album, I can say that as of this moment, I am only interested in him. Some of his cohorts are featured on the latter tracks on the album and although they can rhyme on beat, that proves to be all that they can do.

Tyler admits to not being the best rapper out there, or even "that great," as he explains in the middle of the very first track. He will not let you deny his coolness, however. I can't, either. He is cool, but very disturbed. I found myself caught between being amazed at the awesome simplicity of the beats and confused as to exactly what he was trying to get across. At numerous points throughout the album, Tyler makes it a point to say that he and his group are not horror-core artists. I don't know if he is trying to prove that more to himself or to his fan base, because a lot of the content is definitely seedy, grotesque, and strange.  That's not to say that I didn't like what I heard however. It just seems that he hasn't quite gotten ahold of who he is as an artist, which is fine: he's only 20.

Like I said, a lot of the beats are basic and seemingly easy to produce.  However, the tracks seem to go along great with the lyrics in a song. Ultimately, I have very little or very few complaints about Tyler, his flow, his content, his substance and his ideals. I've listened to a couple of interviews in which Tyler states that basically, he is just doing this because he likes rap, and likes having fun. Unfortunately, a lot of people are taking his lyrics and his wordplay way out of context. Tyler has a lot to learn about the industry.

Would I recommend this album to my fellow hip-hop heads? No. Would I trash this album? No. I think that anybody who could possibly become a fan of Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All is already up on the group. I have to admit that I am actually very surprised at the fact that I like this album, and I like it a lot. Will Tyler be in my top 100 emcees of all time? No. However, for what it is, and for what it's worth, I think that this is a very well put together album. That being said, I think this would've been much better as a mixtape.

Throughout the course of the album, Tyler is fighting constantly with his inner demon in the form of a psychiatrist/sub conscience  He is trying find a way to come to grips with who he is as a person and what really makes him take. I like the approach, already sold on the album lyrics, but I'm not completely sold on the overall package. All in all, if I had to give this a rating of any sort, I would actually give this album a 3/5. I'm sure that surprises a lot of the readers; it definitely surprises me.

11 May 2011


It's been a long time (well, only about a month) and I shouldn't have left you (even though I didn't really go anywhere) without a dope rhyme to step to (or some awesome posts)...

I apologize for the delays recently. I've been hard at work with some major studying for a test at my job. If I pass, I get promoted. If I fail...well, then I don't get promoted. I am sure y'all know which is the more favorable option, right?

Also, I have been extremely hard at work with my other sites. It's been a juggling act and that's no excuse, but I am only one man with the occasional guest writer, so please bear with me. There will be more reviews and Pioneer Series coming soon!

Nifty World: Get on and get right or get left!