Yeezus : A Review

 

 

 

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This album was released on the same day as Born Sinner and while it would be highly tempting to compare the two albums, I won’t. The album was released without any singles and minimal promotion (unless you count the London rant and the rant at the Governor’s ball). So let’s just jump straight into the album.

On sight

Soon as I pull up and park the Benz
We get this bitch shaking like Parkinsons

The beat sounds sorta disjointed with the synths just droning on and on. It sounds more like it belongs in electronica than rap. This song is a sign that he intends to give us “what we need” so it’s safe to assume that the rest of the album would have this feel.

Black Skinhead

They see a black man with a white woman
At the top floor they gone come to kill King Kong
Middle America packed in
Came to see me in my black skin

It’s hard to believe that Daft Punk co-produced this cos it sounds more like heavy metal than that electronic stuff. Yeezy shreds this beat with lyrics about his ability to mix social issues and fashion trends in the same line. This right here is solid

I am a God

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I just talked to Jesus
He said, “What up Yeezus?”
I said, “Shit I’m chilling
Trying to stack these millions”

This song was inspired by a diss from a major fashion designer who sent an invite to Ye on the condition that Ye wouldn’t go for any other fashion show but his. The beat sounds crazy and possessed with distorted drums and synths that almost sound wrong. The message here is that he’s a god and you can’t tell a god what he can or can’t do. It’s agressive and also serves to pass his angry message across. Not the best Yeeezy track I’ve heard but it’s alright. (This is just slightly away from being classed as noise)

New Slaves

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You see it’s broke nigga racism
That’s that “Don’t touch anything in the store”
And this rich nigga racism
That’s that “Come in, please buy more”

The best way to describe this song is Stripped Down. The beat is stripped down to the basics and serves to draw your attention to what Ye is saying. He raps about the Prison industrial complex and how slavery has just changed names but still remains. Another really good track.

Hold my Liquor ft Justin Vernon and Chief Keef

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I’m hanging on a hangover
Five years we been over
Ask me why I came over

And he’s back with the synthethizer. He manipulates it here in such a way that is sounds like it’s malfunctioning ( I actually thought my earphones had gone bad). Ye has some support on this one from fellow Chi town rep Chief Keef and Justin Vernon. A couple of notes:

1. Chief Keef can’t sing and shouldn’t be singing

The message in this song is supposed to be about Ye fighting his inner demons but I just don’t get that vibe so:

2. This is a pretty weak track

3. The only good part of the song is when they all stop talking and let the instrumentals clash for about 2 minutes

I’m in it ft Assasin and Justin Vernon

Chasin’ love, all the bittersweet hours lost
Eatin’ Asian pussy, all I need was sweet and sour sauce

This song tells a story of sex and everyone on this murks it. The Assassin dude does his raggae bit really well and Justin Vernon does his thing with the chorus. Ye then goes forth to paint a picture of what he’ll do to any Juliet (he’s Romeo in this scenario). He stays in it

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Blood on the leaves

Two-thousand-dollar bag with no cash in your purse
Now you sittin’ courtside, wifey on the other side
Gotta keep ’em separated, I call that apartheid

This sounds like a throwback to 808 & Heartbreaks and I truly hated that albumm so I’m just going to skip reviewing the first 3 minutes and go straight to the last 2. The last 2 minutes are a throwback to Ye from the Watch the Throne Era. If you ignore the singing then this is a pretty good track but you have to add the singing and what you have isn’t really awesome.

Guilt trip ft Kid Cudi and Popcaan

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Your feelings like Zulu, then nothing is a Shaka
I hit her with Jamaican dick, I’m the new Shabba
She lookin’ for her daddy, call me Big Poppa

This samples the intro from Pusha T’s “blocka” and even though it starts off with singing, this is another good one. Even Cudder does his singing well. Kanye even uses the supa dupa flow on this to great effect.

Send it up ft King Louie

She say “Can you get my friends in the club?”
I say “Can you get my Benz in the club?”
If not, treat your friends like my Benz

Last night my bitches came in twos
And they both suck like they came to lose

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This song sample Beenie Man and it’s a party track a la “In da club”. Ye does his thing again on this and as for King Louie? Well, all Louis are awesome and this verse serves to prove that. Hate not. (what did you say?)

Bound 2 ft Charlie Wilson

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Walking ’round, always mad reputation
Leave a pretty girl sad reputation
Start a Fight Club, Brad reputation

Soulful beat + clasic Ye + Charlie Wilson. This is a certified tune. It just takes you back to Graduation and Late Registration. This is a strong way to end the album. This song deserves a truckload of replays. And it just has a good feeling to it.

Conclusion

How you rate this album depends on what you were expecting. If you wanted a vintage Ye album then you’d be sorta disappointed but if you just bumped it with an open mind then you’d be really impressed. This album transcends just rap or hip hop, it crosses over and dips into other genres and it’s this mix that is key to how one views this. There are moments when you might want to skip a track and moments when you forget that this is a rap album. This album comes across as 10 track of experimentation like he just wanted to try out something new. This works sometimes and at other times, it fails terribly. Another problem with the album is its length, just when you start to figure it out and get into the spirit of the album, it ends. It’s too short to put your finger on the overall feel. The album has a minimalist theme to it and there are even a couple of moments where there’s just one instrument playing. It gives off a vibe of music stripped down to its bare essence. Stripped to the wire.

With all this and more in mind, I’m going to have to give this a B-

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Born Sinner : A Review

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This album marks the beginning of a new era for the Fayetteville spitter after the end of his basketball themed mixtapes and album. The album was originally supposed to be released in January but it was delayed after Good Kid, Mad City came out. The album was finally released on the same day as Yeezus.

Villuminati

I studied Machiavelli
You niggas couldn’t blow with C4 strapped to your belly
I snuck up out the parks where niggas be living heartless
And cannot tell the difference between Iraqi, Israeli

It’s way darkerr this time.

when Cole started rapping on this track, i was like niiice. He really went in hard, it was like a reborn Cole, not the usuallaid back Cole we’re used to. three dope verses on a dope beat  it doesn’t have a dope hook but that doesn’t take anything away from it. The song adresses cole’s style and how he mixes conscious rap and brag rap.

Cole did good with this intro

Kerney Sermon (skit)

This is from Pastor Kerney Thomas Jr and it just serves as a reminder of an old JCole song

LAnd of the snakes

That’s the least I owed her cause see I tried to hit
On the first night, and nah I ain’t proud of it
I boned her in my dorm room and kicked her out of it

this feels like one of em poetic songs, cole tryin to tell us something thatisn’t glaring at the first listen but even with that, this track coulda been a whole lot deeper. the song sounded pretty boring until the beat changed and you get a glimpse of pre- workout Cole.

Power trip ft Miguel

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Back home I’m grown now and this city’s my throne now

The same clubs that I used to get tossed out

Life got crisscrossed, totally crossed out

Cause now I’m in this bitch and I’m totally bossed out

the first single off the album, it had a good reception, we’re happy. It’s just typical Cole sounding boring but still delivering dope lyrics and with a nice flow and the hook perfectly puts you in the mood of the song. The song is both about his love for a girl and love of hip hop.

Mo money (interlude)

Still broke compared to niggas with old money
I mean the type of niggas that laugh at Hov money
Billionaires with Petroleum and coal money
Probably kill themselves if they had Cole money
Talk shit and I’mma see you like you owe money

cole just be showing some skills, more like a freestyle addition to the albummore of something you’ll hear off a mixtape i guess that’s why it’s an “interlude”

Trouble

Young bad bitch made the pastor drool
Everybody sweat her like Catholic school
Sat next to her in the back of the class
Cheated off of her test and I’m grabbing her ass
She like “Don’t you know this shit already?

i hate to make comparison’s but cole sounded like hov on this one and it’s a bad thing actuallyhe gives a very good graphic description in his 2nd verse that’s just pretty fun if youcould put yourself in his shoes. the way he talked about the thought of this track         just shows why cole is good.

Runaway

When it’s all said and done everybody dies
In this life ain’t no happy endings
Only pure beginnings followed by years of sinning and fake repentance
The preachers say we were made in image of Lord
To which I replied: “Are you sure?

Story time!

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Kids, don’t go to sleep yet. Uncle Jermaine has a story that will keep y’all awake. Once upon a time, the…hey!…wake up!…

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Yeah, that’s how this song felt. I jammed it to the end and understood the story but that didn’t stop me from deleting it when I was done.

She knows

This is Martin Luther King in the club
Getting dubs, with a bad bitch
In his ear sayin’ that she down for whatever
In the back of his mind is Coretta

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Cole has good skills and all, nice wordplay and all that butthis track feels like it lack somethings, even though the sample is used to great effect and the hook and chorus combo is on point.                                                                                                                                          Don’t get me wrong it’s not a bad track but i guess it’s just not needed. The song is about cheating (Check the Coretta King and MLK line)

Rich niggaz

I hate rich niggas goddammit
Cause I ain’t never had a lot dammit
Who you had to kill, who you had to rob
Who you had to fuck just to make it to the top dammit.
Or maybe that’s daddy money, escalator no ladder money
Escalading new caddy money

you know that track on an album that you don’t know you like it but you just do, well this is IT!  it’s a track that just flows, no struggles on it, it’s just pleasure to the ears, it really is a great track. The song has Cole talking about walking the line between being a sellout (A rich Nigga) and being true to his art and how he ends up being a little of both.

Forbidden fruit ft Kendrick Lamar

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Do you believe that Eve had Adam in check
And if so, you gotta expect to sip juice
From the forbidden fruit and get loose

this song right here is a good example of hiphop is art, the way cole uses the story of the garden of edento depict how he as a man can easily fall for woman, it’s just too cool.But only things is kendrick didn’t rap and that’s kinda disappointing but all in all, kendrick did well and the chorus and made the song a good collabo an a glimpse of what’s to come.                                                                                                                                                              And before i forget.

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Chaining day

Look at me, pathetic nigga,this chain that I bought
You mix greed, pain and fame, this its heinous result
Let these words be the colors I’m just paintin my heart
I’m knee-deep in the game and it ain’t what I thought

this track just sounds like he was high off the previous track, he must really have been in a great mood whenhe made this one. he’s basically just talking about materialism and how every rapper needs a gimmick to stay relevant.                                                                                                                                           he plays out the track nicely even though the last two mins of it are basically a drag he reallydoesn’t have to be doing stuff like that. It even sounds like a Wale track.

Ain’t that some shit(interlude)

Yo bitch wearin’ that lipstick
Gave this dick a french kiss
That nigga so wack when the bitch came back
He kissed her hoping that it get him sick, ha
Ain’t that some shit

another “interlude” but damn! the beat is hot and cole went in, i really like this “interlude”

i mean i was like Ross dancing to durosoke

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Crooked smile ft TLC

Cause he don’t seem to want you back and it’s got you asking
So all you see is what you lacking, not what you packing
Take it from a man that loves what you got
And baby girl you’re a star, don’t let ’em tell you you’re not

this is one for em ladies, he’s talking all them girls out there saying that nobody is perfect, i just hope they’re listeningcos the track is plain truth and very appealing with the music and the hook. itwas the second single off this album.

Let Nas down

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This is for the nigga that said that hip-hop was dead
I went to Hell to resurrect it, how could you fail to respect it
Lettin’ Nas down, I got the phone call quietly I mourned dog, I let Nas down
Yeah, and on this flight may I never lose sight, fuck it

as much as it would be nice to go into the details about this track, there’s really no need it  cos Cole just perfectly tells this story in every way possibleit’s one of em really personal tracks, really telling us of how important hip hop is to himi’m sure he’s glad he not only made this one but put it on his albumand even more so that Nas made a dope reply to it. This is Cole’s most sincere moment on the album.  And he samples fela’s Gentleman on this one, in case you didn’t know.

Born sinner ft Fauntleroy

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Should this be my last breath I’m blessed cause it was purposeful
Never got to church to worship lord but please be merciful
You made me versatile, well-rounded like cursive
Know you chose me for a purpose, I put my soul in these verses
Born sinner, was never born to be perfect

the music of this track sounds like something you’d hear in a movie after someone has done a lot of wrong things and found his way to church and just became born-again and ready to live a new life and the song as a whole fully captures that very wellit’s a good end to a really really good album. kudos to cole. ( Who still says kudos? I dare you to actually try saying it out loud. I dare you)

Summary

so here’s my conclusion, this is a dope album, definitely one of the best this year. Cole’s story telling skills were so well accompanied with a flow that’s just  incredible, his wordplay was awesome. this is not an album you’d hear on a regular, he really puts his stamp down as a legit dope rapperand there’s gonna be more to expect from himand i hope he is able to surpass himself with the current level he’s gotten to. though the album doesn’t have some of the illest beats that we might have hoped for, the production is still pretty solid. also his voice is very much acceptable on this album, he wasn’t just rapping on the beats but flowing with it and making his voice go with the tone of the songs and giving us a good feeling of what some of the tracks were abouteven though this wasn’t felt on every track, he passes on this none the less. as for collaborations, Cole was audacious enough to own all his tracks, restricting artistes he featured to only the choruses, which is kind of his style, but i won’t lie it would have been nice to hear Kendrick rap on that track forbiddenfruit but never the less big ups to Cole for owning his shii.

so yeah, my final grade of the album would be a B+.

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