THE GIFTED: A REVIEW

Image

It’s usually really hard for me to listen to Wale cos he either sounds boring or conflicted. He used to be known as this DC rapper that spits knowledge but then he joined MMG and what he was spitting didn’t add up to his new lifestyle. His last album, Ambition, was just about 30% good and didn’t live up to expectation. Let’s hope this one does. [You just can’t give a nigga credit can you?]

The curse of the Gifted

I eat this game and shit this out

My dirty drawers got winning streaks

The title of the song is rather self explanatory and a twist of Hov’s “the gift and the curse”. The song starts off with a couple of dudes spraying a statue of Wale (that’s probably sometime in the future). Not a great song but a good enough start to the album with Wale’s live band providing the instrumentals. [This is just some background music basically].

LoveHateThing ft Sam Dew

Listen when you get the keys it’s seldom, you don’t  get the beef

Make a nigga wanna get the piece to get to peace

Like the first line says, this song was inspired by Marvin Gaye. This is about how you can’t be loved by all and even the people that hate you with still hate you at some point. This is a strong track which is sort of a throwback to the mixtape Wale days. I guess this is the New Black Soul that he has been hyping so much. Really good track with Wale’s regular flow.

Sunshine

Before I love a industry girl I’ll marry civilian

Picture a young, rich former taking me serious

This song has Wale going back to his poetic style which gets really boring really fast but on this one, he is able to keep it lively with the drums and that dope-ass chorus.

Heaven’s Afternoon ft Meek Mill

Been a week since he seen his mother

And 18 since he seen the other

-Wale

I was so fresh, so clean when I stepped on that scene

Pulled up Aston Martin, you could ask them ya’ll seen

-Meek Mill

Image

Born to lose, built to win. Wale believes that line can sum up his whole career cos even though he had all the odds stacked against him, he was still able to make it in rap.

Golden Salvation

The Good Book said praise

But you so stuck in your ways

You got my image appraised

 Wale’s own ode to Jesus Pieces and jewelry in general (everyone has their own Jesus Piece song now). His own ode presents a more introspective view into hip hop’s obsession with rocking gold chains. A strong track. It is told from the perspective of Jesus [now that’s daring, gotta respect that] .(For another example of a track where Wale raps like this, jam RATHER BE ft JCole and Curren$y where they all rap about box/puss). This song deserves more than a couple of replays. [sadly as dope as this track is, it’s the shortest; of all the tracks to cut short].

Vanity

Ya ain’t pay up for no pussy but you pay for what she see

This song tho. He uses this song-like flow on this that just goes in perfectly with the beat and the overall feel of the song. As the title indicates, it is a song about Vanity. [for me wale doesn’t do too much on the track, he just allows the flow of the music do the work and he goes with that flow, it’s just him vibing out on a sampled track].

Gullible ft CeeLo Green

What if they told you this music was bogus?

The government run it, they controllin’ the culture

Image

We all know TV killed the Radio. Imagine a time where you didn’t need to see how an artiste looked before deciding he was good, where reputation was based solely on flow.  A really good song with CeeLo singing some angelic stuff on the chorus. This song has Wale talking about how the media has affected the society and the way people think. [the idea appears pretty golden, good stuff, I like the way he expresses the idea but he doesn’t exactly kill the track as I would have wanted]

Bricks ft Lyfe Jennings and Yo Gotti

Can’t shoot, can’t dribble, can’t rap

Young nigga don’t got no options

-Wale

First time I heard bricks, I was thinking construction

Until my ‘migo plug from Mexicó gave me my  introduction (now)

-Yo Gotti

Image

Image

This song is about the boom in dope peddling and how he tried to keep himself above it due to the fact that he can actually rap. Yo Gotti surprised me with his verse on this one, I was expecting total lil-wayne-like crap but his verse was like a brief Autobiography of Yo Gotti. Another really good song.

Clappers ft Juicy J and Nicki Minaj

And I ain’t hating mama, fact I wanna take your  number

Said you save yo bread from Magic something  happened then went Voila!

-Wale

Your chick to be, I be a getting her pregnant in her throat

-Juicy J

Got ass for days, come activate

This ass on fire evacuate

Throw that ass in the air, evaporate

-Nick Minaj

Image

Image

At last! This is the first party track on this album and it’s really good despite the verse from Nicki Minaj. Juicy J’s verse isn’t that good [it’s never really supposed to be] but on a party beat, it just works. [You cannot make songs like this without including Juicy J, and wale makes that work for him, good track]

Bad Remix ft Rihanna

You froze with it, you try and play Sub Zero I be  Scorpion

Pshh get over here today

Smellin’ like Jean Paul, got the ye

Image

This song has already been remixed once so I don’t really think this remix is of much use as it is. It’s a good track anyway just not as good as the original. [I was expecting that, but truth is this Is a very well remixed track, the texture in Rihanna’s voice was lovely and the way they blended in the song just makes it dope, and I’m not even gonna compare it to the original, same song but just different].

Tired of Dreaming ft Neyo and Rick Ross

And no, I won’t OD, you’ll get D, young as 19

I believe age is for math, all I need is chemistry

-Wale

Bonita Applebaum – my strawberry letter

Love Potion #9, this shit’s a gifted era

-Rick Ross

Image

Image

Another good track which would be pretty average if not for the chorus by Neyo. [mostly cos it’s more of an RnB ft Rap song and that should be the other way, doesn’t feel right]. Not the best verse from Wale but Rozay’s verse has to count as one of his best (I guess whoever wrote that was paid 5 figures).

Rotation ft Wiz Khalifa and 2chainz

I define the odds, 2 Glock nines is my body guards

Ain’t nothing slick to a can of oil

-2chainz

A nigga like me don’t smoke blunts so I keep those  joints in rotation

Bad bitches calling the radio, keep my joints in  rotation

Keep throwing money on her ass, she keep that  joint in rotation

First I’m in a car and then another car, I keep them  joints in rotation

-Wiz Khalifa

Like a nigga out the globe, with a nigga throwed

Like a cornerback in the flat, nigga in the zone

-Wale

Image

An ode to the sacred leaf with Wiz Khalifa and 2chainz. 2chainz spits his regular “2 bracelets,4 chains” stuff and Wiz Khalifa spits his regular “rhyme with one word 5 times” stuff (although Khalifa’s style works this type cos he uses “joints in rotation” in four different ways). A good track. [good blunt music]

Simple Man

Ayo I’m goin places, Dior Homme lacin all occasions

And Lord gave me amazing thinking and short  patience

This song was usually produced by Wale himself and the beat is aiite with a slow first verse and a sped up second verse. You have to jam it to believe it cos I even thought this song would be crap cos of the title and the fact that it was produced by Wale. Pleasant surprise. [he samples Pac on this and well he doesn’t quite cut it for me, it’s not bad but it’s really good].

88

They tryna see me fail

Just know my thinking and my sneakers rare

Get that Chi-Town love, I’m in Leaders gear

This track talks about Wale’s spectacular sneaker game. This track also compares Wale’s career to that of one of the greatest: Michael Jordan [lol he’s trippin on his laces] (I actually consider him the fifth greatest after Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain, Larry Bird and Magic Johnson).[like how is this relevant to us?][only thing I really enjoyed about this track were the instrumentals, Awesome shii].

Black Heroes

This cold poet just throw up quotables to give em hope

Go and slow up haters train of thoughts with brain storms

This song has Wale concentrating more on the lyrical aspect of music as this song plays without a readymade or commercial-like chorus. If this is what we’re to expect from the album about Nothing then this is a sign of good things to come.

The outro about nothing serves as the intro to Wale’s second album of 2013. The white dude speaking is Jerry Seinfeldof Seinfeld fame and the inspiration behind Wale’s breakout EP.

Bad ft Tiara Thomas

She hurt feelings, she break hearts

She stay quiet, she play smart

She take pride, in going out

Getting hollered at, and saying nah

Image

The original bad that samples an old Tiara Thomas song (meaning Rihanna’s song was the RIHmix of the remix of the sampled mix of the original). Another good track that is prolly better suited to the ladies.

Conclusion

 While he has appered to have lost some parts of his former self, he has improved on the parts he has left and added to that. He’s still the type of guy who wears too much cologne, but at least he’s figured out the scent that works best for him.

This album is surprisingly good but that might be because I expected absolutely nothing from him on this album [you should be ashamed of yourself]. This album was the last one I downloaded of all the Albums released in June and it took me even longer to actually listen to it. The production on this is also pretty good but the major part of this is the wordplay and delivery which he does so well on most of the tracks.

This album presents a more mature side to Wale’s media persona. It’s a return to the introspective,thoughtful and somewhat wiser Wale. Even though the album is 16 tracks long, it doesn’t feel too long at all. Instead, it feels a bit short. Some tracks were not needed at all eg Bad or Bad Remix (Bad was already on FOLARIN) and some songs just need a particular mood to be enjoyed.

[The album is actually pretty long cos most of the tracks take longer than they should( some became a drag towards their ends) and that kinda brings a drawback to the whole vibe of the album. Also, this album has some really good collabos which even goes kinda unnoticeable cos there very few rappers he worked with o this. The album is like in two phases, first you get the whole soulful instrumental thing going for like the first 7 tracks on the album and then it just kinda switches to a more urban ‘MMG’ feel for another 6 tracks and then back again to the instrumental feel. That in a way kinda brings a sense of ‘confusion’ into the mix tho it doesn’t sound bad but it kinda splits the musical idea of the album in two. So some people might like one part of the album and the detest the rest and vice versa but from a commercial point of view it actually really pays off cos it allows the album to cut across well and reach different types of music lovers]… 

I’m going to have to give this a B-

Image

Image

 

One thought on “THE GIFTED: A REVIEW

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s