Music Reviews

On March 4, 2016 Kendrick Lamar decided to release an unexpected album titled Untitled, which features the song Untitled that he premiered on The Colbert Report. The album has 8 songs all which are titled untitled followed by the numeric placement on the album. I think the Untitled series is a pleasant follow up from his album Grammy winning album To Pimp a Butterfly, personally I enjoy the Untitled album more. In Untitled Kendrick sounds more like he's having fun while incorporating his political style. Untitled is an album that you can smoke, drink and just ride to without feeling depressed. He borrows some of Drake's If you're reading feel towards the end of track 2 and he sounds good, but definitely is not something that I would like him to continue. Untitled continues the Old school disco jazzy sound that Kendrick presented to us on To Pimp a Butterfly. I like the album but I am looking forward to Kendrick's next album, in hopes that it's not as commercial as To Pimp a Butterfly













What a nice Valentine’s Day treat we received from Kanye West, with the release of his highly anticipated 8th album The Life of Pablo. After several name changes Kanye finally stuck with Pablo as such a fitting title for the album. As always the entire production on the album was incredible. Kanye painted murals of each instrument as feelings like they were scenes from an old time movie. If a movie was used to describe the album I would instantly envision an old time black & white movie. The Life of Pablo is a fusion of old College Dropout Kanye, MBDTF, and a dab of Yeezus all mixed into one. Honestly I haven't concluded my exact feelings towards the album. The intro "Ultra Beam" was uplifting, "No Parties" was incredible and as predicted the best song on the album, "Wolves" was great also, but it still feels like there's something missing in this album. Unlike all of his other masterpieces The Life of Pablo is missing those sequences of songs that not only flow together and feed off of each other but also that love factor. Usually on a Kanye album I'm expecting myself to absolutely love 3 or 4 songs, but the only song I crave is on Pablo is "No Parties". As for the subject matter, Kanye just doesn't sound happy, and the album is more personal, when I enjoy political Kanye. Overall I enjoyed the album, the intro which features Chance the Rapper screams church, and he’d be the perfect Christian rapper. The songs following the intro I would not consider gospel although Kanye said they would. Kanye stacked up on features for this album and I'd say that it definitely paid off. No, The Life of Pablo is not my favorite Kanye album, but at least as a whole it's better than Yeezus. 
Songs that made each album great!

The College Dropout: 
All Falls Down, Through the Wire, Slow Jamz, Jesus Walks

Late Registration:
Heard 'em Say, Diamonds, Touch the Sky, Crack Music
 
Graduation:
THE WHOLE ALBUM

808s & Heartbreak:
Say You Will, Heartless, Paranoid, Love Lockdown

My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy:
THE WHOLE ALBUM

Watch The Throne:
THE WHOLE ALBUM

Yeezus:
New Slaves, Black Skin Head, Bound 2, Blood on the Leaves

The Life of Pablo:

30 hours, No Parties, Wolves,

(Update)

After continuously listening to the Life of Pablo, I've concluded that the album is in fact in sync with each song, feeding off of every ending. The album is still not my favorite from Kanye, but it's a great album. Kanye includes some political matters from his perspective as an artist, and shows us he's still a musical genius. “Facts” has even grown on me, being a song that I can only listen to while I'm enjoying to the entire album. “Facts” is Yeezy's "Ham" referencing the Watch the Throne single with Jay Z. The Life of Pablo is the depth of Kanye's current state of mind and shows frustration and happiness all in one. 







Well done Ri Ri, I'm not even a fan of Rihanna but I did enjoy the new album ANTI. The highly anticipated album was initially suppose to come out in 2014, but was held during the middle of Rihanna switching labels from Def Jam to Roc Nation. Yikes a label with Beyoncé and Rihanna as their pop leaders, no wonder why Rita Ora wants out lol. Anti is exhilarating, giving you a release from life's pressures. Songs like "Needed" makes you value yourself, realizing at times when you're thinking about a special person or blaming yourself for the bad things that happen, that you're special too and they're encoded with flaws also. Well that's what I took from the song lol. This is a fun album, and singles like "Work" definitely captures the essence of the entire album. Anti was released on Tidal on January 28 as a free download, then released in all online stores on January 29, and is set to hit store shelves on February 5. So yes, the word is definitely out, and Anti has already gone platinum, but I'm unsure of if the album is platinum under the new regulations or the old. Well I guess that doesn't matter now because it's still platinum. 







Finally Willow Smith releases her debut album Ardipithecus! Fans like me for months and years were teasers with singles and EPs, but patiently waiting to hear more than 3 or 4 songs at a time. Now the question is, did she deliever and satisfies her audience hunger for her music? The answer is yes! She's perfectly unique in my book, but with her neo-soul style you'll either really enjoy her sound or instantly not. That's the pros and cons about being a unique artist. The 15 track album has only one feature from an artist named Jabs, nice job. Although I really wanted to hear another song with the singer SZA like on her 3 Ep. However Ardipithecus gives us a nice neo-soul pop alternative sound that is well balanced by Willow's voice. I enjoyed the whole album honestly; my favorite songs are Waves of Nature, IDK, and RandomSong. This is exciting for me because not only is willow touching on topics that I discuss in my own writing, but she's only 15. So young with so much left to grow, I'm excited to witness her grow as an artist and to see how far she goes. We'll have a song together sometime in the future I'm sure of it, Nice Job Willow I give the album an 8 of 10!












This is a new vibrant shadow sound for Cudi, which the audience is not happy about. The alternative sound that the album creates is unlike the other recorded albums that fans are used to hearing. Speedin' Bullet to Heaven is Cudi's sixth studio album, originally titled Man on the Moon 3 until about 3 months prior to its release. Cudi announced the rename to Speedin' Bullet to Heaven, with apologies to his fans via Twitter and prepared them for the new sound. Cudi bolder states "SBTH isn't Hip Hop its alternative, and sorry he's not the niggas you listen to on the radio." In response to that statement I'll proudly say sorry Cudi this may not be a hip hop album, but you'll always be classified as a part of hip hop. As for Speedin' Bullet to Heaven, I'm an advid hip hop listener so no, this was nowhere near his Man on the Moon duel, but I did enjoy some songs. I could easily relate to songs like "the nothing," and Cudi's voice has always been perfect for the alternative sound. As an alternative album I’d say Speedin' Bullet was developed and organized nicely, the beats flow and Cudi accomplished not sounding like hip hop. He also opened up his hip hop listeners ears to a new sound of music. As for rating I'd give the album a 6 as an alternative album not hip hop. This sound fits Cudi, but I rather hip hop Cudi.  









Somehow I've managed to adapt to the current Lil Wayne. I've accepted the fact that the old Lil Wayne will never come back, unless he's on a feature. He seems to have very solid features, but as for his own projects well that's a completely different story. No Ceilings 2 is similar to No Ceilings because it contains songs that Wayne remade to fit his character, alongside a couple of original pieces. However that's the only similarity. No Ceilings to many is consider Wayne best mixtape with songs like "I'm single" and "DOA," hands down classic, but No Ceilings 2 is the complete opposite. Yes, there are some good songs on No Ceilings 2 like "No Reason" which feature King Los, he snapped. Wayne's touch on "Diamonds Dancing" was pretty nice also, but as for Hotline Bling, Wayne please never do that again!!! Wayne's version of Hotline Bling sounds more like a parody song. As for the complete mixtape, I didn't enjoy it; there were more songs that didn't catch my ear than did. Seems like Lil Wayne really wanted to be featured on Drake's & Future's What a Time to be Alive, and some verses can be mistaken as shots towards Drake. No Ceilings 2 makes me further question the current state of Drake's and Wayne's friendship. Overall the mixtape was ok, I have to give it a 5 out of 10. 




Lil Wayne - No Ceilings 2




Badu is back to remind you, But You Caint Use My Phone as she titles her new mixtape the classic 1997 "Call Tyrone" phrase. The mixtape features Andre 3000 and Drake who compliments the tape nicely. Badu's remake of The Isley Brothers "Hello" that features Former lover Andre 3000 is almost perfect. They keep the essence of the song, but still deliver a unique touch to the song. Their voices match up perfectly for the remake. I enjoyed the entire mixtape from start to finish, well except for "U Don't Have to Call" which samples the hook of Usher's 2001 hit single. I just didn't think her vocals fit the beat and the song kind of annoyed me. Other than that I love the mixtape and can play it all day. But You Caint Use My Phone is an updated Erykah Badu as you can clearly hear the difference in comparison to her past material, but she still has her unique sound to represent who she is. Overall I enjoyed the mixtape and rate it an 8 out of 10. 


Tracklist:
01. Caint Use My Phone Suite
02. Hi
03. Cell U Lar Device
04. Phone Down
05. U Use To Call Me (feat. Drake)
06. Mr. Telephone Man
07. U Don’t Have To Call
08. Whats Yo Phone Number
09. Dial’afreaq
10. I’ll Call U Back
11. Hello (feat. André 3000)














Guess Who's Back? Yep, Bad Boy! Diddy decided to release an unexpected mixtape title MMM for all the Bad Boy fans. Saluting none other than the late Notorious B.I.G. Puff Daddy is making sure his legacy lives on in this tape. This star studded mixtape features Bad Boy's current roster; King Los, Lil Kim, and French Montana, but also artist like Future, Wiz Khalifa, Big Sean, Travis Scott and more. I enjoyed MMM because it brings out that classic New York sound that us 90s babies remember. My favorite is the "Facts" introduction, Oooh that was cold! Great way to introduce your legacy Puff, and yes I have to refer to you as Puff, because that's what this mixtape does, MMM brings me back. King Los is hands down the best MC on the tape, Big Sean second this time. Diddy still sucks at rapping, but he's Diddy. The only flaw I can hear in MMM is the hooks could've been a little more catchier, but other than that, MMM is solid. I give MMM an 7 out 10.


Diddy - MMM





Young Thug - Slime Season 2

The streets are loving Young Thug's newest mixtape Slime Season 2. I guess you can say he delivered on his natural sound. No, it's not my cup of tea, but the beats are fitting for his voice, and he sounds like the Young Thug that first came out, which is a good thing for his fans. Nice job Thugga you lasted another year in the clubs with this one.








On time and ready is what the punk rock group 5 Seconds of Summer did with their sophomore album Sounds Good Feels Good. The 17 track album released on October 23 includes the hit singles "She's Kinda Hot" and "Hey Everybody," which also went #1 on Billboard charts. Fans wasted no time making the album trend worldwide, and I can't blame them. Sounds Good Feels Good is an appropriate title for the album, because it stirs up those exact emotions. I enjoyed the album! Audiences of all ages can enjoy the album, ranging in topics from depression to society's value of the monetary system. The message in this album is that it's okay to be yourself and keep working towards your dreams. If you thought their first self titled album, 5 Seconds of Summer was punk than you will definitely think this album is punk rock Sounds Good Feels Good reminds me of bands like Green Day a little bit, separating themselves from that boy band feel. I give the album 9 out of 10. 





All We Need is Raury with his debut album which endorses peace, unity, and happiness. Normally I'd wait a few days before reviewing a new album, in order to let the piece sink in and develop an open minded opinion, but no need for All We Need. Atlanta native Raury introduced his unique sound to us at the beginning of 2015 with a 6 track ep titled Indigo Child.  Shorty after he made the XXL Freshmen Class of 2015 cover, really making a mark by having the best freestyle out of the class in my opinion. Today, October 16, 2015 Raury released his debut album All We Need. 











If you like and understand The Beatles or John Lennon then you should love Raury. He promotes unity, peace, and fun, while addressing political issues that I agree are important for everyone to know about. I personally wouldn't categorize Raury's music as rap or hip hop; although after that Freshmen freestyle and songs like "Forbidden Knowledge" proves he can be consider a rapper.
Unless I'm interpreting the title of the album wrong, I believe All We Need is reinstating John Lennon's phrase "All We Need Is Love," but instead is saying All We Need are the things he's addressing in the album, which are; Peace.Love.Unity.Knowledge and Freedom. I think that's it, but anyways I enjoyed the album a lot, and from a technical perspective the instruments were in unison. The strings on the guitar matched the presence, words, and feelings of the entire album. I rate the album 9 out of 10 for pure innovation. 







More music from an upcoming female rapper named Li Li Nicols. The song samples El Debarge "I Like," and although she puts her own unique twist on the song, Li Li Nicols managed to keep its smooth sound. DAG is an acronym for dreams.ambition.goals, the title of the single and upcoming mixtape. Such a demanding voice from such a small person. Tell us what you think?







Ty Dolla $ign - Airplane Mode

Is this a taste of Free TC, the title of Ty Dolla $ign's debut album, which is set to release about a month from now. This past Monday Ty released a 10 track mixtape titled Airplane Mode, which features producers Mike Will Made It, Sonny Digital and Others. I enjoyed the mixtape, it sets a nice fall mood, and gives you that classic RnB sound. With songs like "Violent" you instantly want to party. This is a feel good mixtape, I rate it a 7 out of 10.







After carefully reviewing rapper The Game newest album The Documentary 2, I've concluded that The Game is a living advertisement. The Documentary 2 is the follow up album for Game's classic debut album The Documentary, released in 2005. The Documentary was an instant classic with songs like "Hate or Love It," and during that time period Game was considered "the savior" for West Coast rappers. To make a long story short, The Documentary was great! Now as for The Doc Two, well Game I appreciate the lyrical efforts throughout the album. The lyrics were intricate and described the images you wanted to portray on the album.  Now hear me out, yes the songs sound good, and yes The Game displayed some lyricism, but how many features should be on an album in order for us to consider the album collaboration or compilation album? The Documentary 2 track list includes 19 songs (including intro & skit) and of the 19 songs 13 (excluding intro & skit) of them contains features from one or more artist, and if they're not singing the hook that's ridiculous to me. The Documentary 2 to me lacks creativity, innovation and individuality, and seems as if Game wanted to be Kendrick and Drake when he should be The Game. Not even counting the number of duplicate bars or similar bars that were quoted from previous hip hop songs or artist. To top this off the whole album gives you a Good Kid M.a.a.d City vibe, which not a bad thing just unoriginal.  

I understand that we as artist pay homage to our idols and stuff but Game you over did it this time. The number of other artist mentioned in this album is ridiculous, he shouted out everyone and their momma. Below I've compiled a list of all the songs and the Artist mentioned inside of those songs from Game. There is not one song that didn't mention another artist or used their line, like come on! To me that show lack of concept and creativity, to repetitively mention established artist, especially if they're not reciprocating the favor. As for the quality of songs they're good and well orchestrated, I could hear how someone else would be able to enjoy and relate to the album, just not me. I'd rather listen to all of the people he named and quoted, making me rate the album a 5 out of 10.


Here's the List
On Me "What a Day, What A Day" Ice Cube - a good day
   K.Dot
   Dr. Dre
   Erykah Badu
   TDE
   French Montana
   No Limit/C-Murder

Step up
   Mystikal 
   Mob Deep
   Iggy Azaliea 
   Plies
   Karreuche

Don't Trip
   Tony Toni Tone
   NWA

Standing on a Ferrais
  Peyton Manning
  Kanye West
  Craig Mack
  Jay Z 
  Trey Songz
  R. Kelly
  French Montana
  Khole Kardashian
  
Dollar and a Dream
  Kanye West
  Andre 300
  Lupe Fiasco
  Ab Soul
  Tupac
  50 Cent
  Mary J Blidge
  Kendrick 
  Biggie
  Big Pun
  Dr. Dre 

Made in America
  Rich Porter
  Kim Porter
  Steph Curry
  Michael Jordan
  Raekwon
  Dr. Dre
  Nas
  Tupac
  Eazy E
  Mac Dre
  Tha Jacka
  JT the Bigga Figga
  Biggie
  50 Cent

Hashtag
  Luniz

Circles
  Rihanna
  Kanye
  Dr. Dre

Dedicated 
  Future
  Nicki Minaj
  Meek Mill
  BG
  Lil Wayne 
  Turk

Bitch you ain't shit
  "Bitches ain't shit but hoes and sluts" snoop
  Joseline Hernandez
  Stevie J
  Drake

Summertime
  Missy Eliot 
  Tupac
  Biggie 
  Michael Jordan
"Give me a trap queen" Fetty Wap

Mula 
  Kanye 
  50 Cent
  Eazy E
  LL Cool J

The Doc 2
  Dr. De
  Future
  Magic Johnson
  Suge Knight
  Diddy
  Bruce Lee
  Rihanna
  Karreuche
  Chris Brown
  Tupac
  Lauryn Hill
  Wu Tang Clan
  MC Hammer
  Ja Rule 
  Rakim
  Eminem 

New York, New York
  Rick Ross
  Magic Johnson
  Kanye 
  Obama

100
  40
  Black
  OB
  Biggie
  Diddy
  Hush
  Lil Wayne
  Bird man
  Lil Snupe
  Meek Mill
  Tupac
  Biggie
  Drake 
  Pimp C

Just another day
  Eazy E
  NWA
  Steph Curry
  Allen Iverson
  Faith Evans
  Mary J Blidge 
  Dr. Dre 
  Amber Rose 
  Suge Knight
  Nate Dogg

LA
  Dr. Dre

  Jay Z


  



Fetty Wap
Well the judgement is in about Fetty Wap self-titled album. With the hit song "Trap Queen" as the lead single Fetty Wap instantly went viral, making him a part of the 2015 XXL Freshmen Class. After several covers of the hit song were made audiences began anticipating more music from the freshmen. Critics thought Fetty would be a one hit wonder with the classic song, but he proved us wrong with the follow up single "My Way" which features Drake on the radio version. "All I Gotta Do is Put My Mind to This Sh**" is what Fetty did with this album. Fetty Wap delivers his unique sound nicely and with song like "Trap Luv" "679" and "Whateva" makes the album very catchy. However I dislike that the album has so many features from the rapper Monty. No offense, but honestly Monty sucks as a rapper, I tried to give him a shot but every time his part comes on I just want to skip it, and I really disliked that. Also the album has too many tracks in my opinion, although several songs from this album were on the mixtape sooo I "guess" he gets a pass, but I prefer an album to have no more than 14 songs, but that's just me. Other than that, Fetty Wap was great if you enjoy his style, because the songs were definitely catchy, but for me the album was just okay. My rating is 6 of 10.


1. “Trap Queen”
2. “How We Do Things” feat. Monty
3. “679” feat. Monty
4. “Jugg” feat. Monty
5. “Trap Luv”
6. “I Wonder”
7. “Again”
8. “My Way” feat. Monty
9. “Time” feat. Monty
10. “Boomin”
11. “RGF Island”
12. “D.A.M.”
13. “No Days Off” feat. Monty
14. “I’m Straight”
15. “Couple Bands”
16. “Rock My Chain” feat. M80
17. “Rewind” feat. Monty
18. “Let It Bang”
19. “For My Team” feat. Monty
20. “Whateva” feat. Monty
21. “Trap Queen (Remix)” feat. Gradur





What A Time To Be ALive


"What a time to be alive" is the title of Drake's & Future's collaborative project, that Drake recently confirmed via Instagram. The two rappers have been hinting about the collaboration over the past week via social medial, and like everyone else we've been keeping our eye out. 
. Drake recently shared the artwork for the project on Instagram, captioning it "WHAT A TIME TO BE ALIVE” will be available at 8pm EST, Sunday on ITunes. So stay tuned for the review!

The internet went crazy after the release of What a Time to Be Alive, Drake and Future collaboration project. After thoroughly listening to the new Drake & Future album What a Time to Be Alive, I've concluded that this is the best club banger album of the year. Yes, I agree with the audience. Now comparing What a Time to be Alive to Watch The Throne is a far stretch, but I will say Future and Drake delivered on their expectations. This is the stripper and drugs anthem! As for all of the conscious lyric listening people like myself, this is not the album for you, nor should you expect it to be. What A Time To Be Alive gives fans what they want for the clubs and banging car rides, like turn all the way up for this album, songs like; Diamonds Dancing, JumpMan, and Big Rings is what the fans yearn for. These songs also seem to be the fan favorites. Of course Drake doesn't leave his true comeback season fans hanging as he ends the tape with my personal favorite 30 For 30 Freestyle. 
 This album stirred up a lot of reaction (of course) with Future taking shots at both Ciara and Meek Mill saying "you're only a battle rapper," and Drake pouring out his soul about the Young Money "family" that has split. Artist Kid Cudi tweeted shortly after the release of the album "people are so comfortable with mediocre," and to some extent I agree. There were flaws in the tape, for one the introduction could've been an actual intro. Digital Dash sounds like just another song on the album, when an intro in my perspective should be in dept and describe what it is your about to listen to and why, not just another skip-able song. The songs are songs that wouldn't have taken much time to produce and could've been more in dept, but it's Future & Drake so of course you're getting nothing but radio hits. So with that being said they delivered the hits as they should and congrats 9 out of 10. 


Dirty Sprite 2 

Released: July 17, 2015
In the midst of the baby mama drama and twitter arguments, Future Hendrix managed to release his hot new album Dirty Sprite 2. This is the third studio album from Future, with only one feature, rapper pal Drake. Which is a major difference from the sophomore album Honest that contains 9 features. In recent interviews Future discusses going back to his roots, the ATL, in order to recreate himself and his fans love for the Future they've always known. I should go into the Ciara & Future drama, because of his recent comments regarding Ciara bringing their son around her new boo, Russell Wilson. Since the break up with Future and singer Ciara the Futurehive is buzzing saying, "he's back!" I to am enjoying Dirty Sprite 2. The production fits the album and Future's voice. The summer club bangerz have finally arrived. Despite the "promoting of drug use" comments made, but taken out of context by rapper OG Maco on Twitter. The album is so far a success. Future responded by saying "see him in person," but the beef was later squashed verbally, according to Future's interview on the Breakfast Club. Future also stated before that his music is suppose to be relate-able and "make you feel good," and in songs like "Trap Niggas" DS2 does exactly that. Well done Future I give the album a 9 out of 10!



18th Dynasty

After thoroughly listening to Tyga's new album, I'm still confused. The beats were dope, the cover art dope, Tyga's flow dope, but the lyrics and story line are all over the place. I'm all for lyricism, but they have to be in-sync that's what makes an album good, to be able to flow and build from one song to the next. The album seems like he's talking about and/or to someone, are you talking to your family, drake, the audience? I'm just confused. Overall the album is okay nothing spectacular, but not terrible either. I can definitely play songs like God Talk and Pure Luxury in the car as I ride. I rate the album a 5 out of 10.  






Dreams Worth More Than Money


Dreams worth more than money is the second studio album from rapper Meek Mill released on June 29, 2015. The album features Chris brown, Drake, the Weekend, Future, Rick Ross, Diddy, and of course girlfriend Nicki Minaj on 2 songs. Meek seems to have calmed down his usual turnt hype voice on this album oppose to his debut album "Dreams and Nightmares" maybe girlfriend Nicki Minaj have something to do with that, but his tone was definitely different. Nicki features on 2 songs "Bad for You" and the leading single "All Eyes on You" which also features Chris Brown. The three of them recently performed the single at the BET Awards show where Meek and Nicki paraded their relationship. The song describes their relationship and it's problems being a Hollywood couple. As for the album Dreams Worth More Than Money, I give it a 6 out of 10, the songs were well developed, extremely consistent, and the production is incredible, but I just didn't feel like Meek was being Meek. The lyrics on the album wasn't complicated very straightforward and Idk about Meek trying to harmonize, naw stick to straight rapping. As a follow up album from Dreams and Nightmares I think the album did its job dodging the "sophomore slum," but I just wish the album had more of a Meek fill.

Wildheart

Sexy, Sexy, Sexy! is all I can say about Miguel's Wildheart. The RnB sensation shakes things up on this third album, with hot explicit sexy lyrics to match the cover art. Coffee as the lead single sets the tone of the entire album, that paints vivid pictures of passion between lovers. The instrumentals used on the album are very Miguel like, meaning you hear the strings and bass that coincides with Miguel's voice. I enjoyed Wildheart, because I can feel the passion, and I rate the album a 9 out of 10. The cover art is also immaculate! Good Job Miguel, keep the hits coming!



At.Long.Last.A$AP

Well isn't this a surprise, A$AP Rocky decided to release his sophomore album Monday night. If anyone else was wondering where TF A$AP has been, now we know, making a good ass album. I'm sure my readers by now can tell that I'm a picky music listener. I only enjoy good music that has noticeable work and effort inside of the music. A$AP long story short you delivered. I've only listened to the album once so after a few more times I'm sure I'll update this post, but as for now ALLA is dopeness! The collaborations with Joe Fox give ALLA a nice in sync sound. ALLA also features the artist: Miguel, Lil Wayne, Future, Schoolboy Q, M.I.A., and more. Yes, the album has a lot of features, but all of the features are needed to build this sound. A$AP also delivers of course with his flow and content on the album. The Holy Ghost intro is so far my favorite off of ALLA, setting the tone for the album. A$AP has yet to disappoint his true audience with his music. 5/5 A$AP keep hustlin! 



Remember My Name


Mr. Ice Cream Man


Unexpected new music from Guwop is the talk of the internet. Although Guwop is currently incarcerated he still has remained somewhat relevant in the music streetz. Honestly I am not a fan of Gucci's music, and never was, but Guwop has my respect. Back in 2006 I never expected this Atlanta movement that Brick Squad took over with to last over 3 years, and the movement definitely has made a legendary place in hip-hop. With the guidance of Deb (Waka Flocka mom), Brick Squad dominated Atlanta, making the Atlanta turn up "sound" a type of culture, whether you like it or not, this is true. As for the new mixtape King Gucci, I think it's a good tape for Guwop. King Gucci has all of the right features such as: migos, fetty wap, pee wee long way, Riff Raff etc... Those are good features because those artists are relevant to the ATL sound lane with the exception of Young Thug. I also like how he used more producers making the beats and overall sound slightly different oppose to the other mixtapes. Once again this is not my preferred style of music but I can hear others who enjoy the style liking this mixtape. DJ Scream & DJ Drama was the perfect choice for the DJ's also.  Good Job Guwop!      



Cherry Bomb 


Cherry Bomb is the fourth album for rapper, Tyler The Creator. Although the odd future camp has been M.I.A from the hip hop industry, they definitely understand how to remain relevant. As for the album I think it’s passable as a solid fourth album. The fourth albums are supposed to be more relaxed and less intense because as an artist this is the time to vacate, after all the years of long sleepless nights. Cherry Bomb is not a classic, but it's Tyler, and I give the album a 7 out of 10.  









Barter VI


Young Thug just took to his Instagram a little while ago to reveal the release date and artwork for his highly anticipated Carter VI album.

Going shirtless in front of a red backdrop, while the words Carter VI are coming from... for the cover, Thugger also wrote the caption “4/17”, indicating that the project will be dropping in only 10 days from now on the 17th. Am I the only one who finds this cover art sightly disrespectful? Yes, I could be over analyzing the art work, but placing the name right there seems like this is yet another shot at Lil Wayne, saying "F U" and "Suck this." However that's only my opinion. We're anxious to hear the Carter VI with all the Cash Money controversy going on, we will finally hear Thugger's invovlement hopefully.
Stay tuned for the tracklist and review for the Cater VI Thugger version lol.

(Update) Due to legal manners Young Thug has changed the name of the Carter VI to the Barter VI. I think that's a dumb ass name, but hey I guess you have to do what you gotta do. I would've chosen to switch around the name like; the six carter, six C, the arter, something like that, but I guess.

Barter 6 Review

After all of the controversy generated by the original title of the album, here is the Barter 6. Thugger displays his usual sound followed by catchy hooks. I can definitely hear the album being played in every club in Atlanta as well as throughout the US. Most of the production was by London on da track, an Atlanta favorite. I'm sure that Thugger satisfied all of his fans with the Barter 6, by not conforming to any other sound. As for me, this is not particularly my choice of music with the exception of a few of Thugger past hits such as: Stoner and Life Style. However I did enjoy the "With That" and "Check" from the Barter 6 and for that reason I give the album a solid 6. 




The Conscious Truth 

Amethyst

For those of you interested in actually knowing about these crystals, which seem to be popping up over the web, here you are. Amethyst is the birth stone for the zodiac sign Aquarius. Crystals are used for several purposes to benefit the mind and body. Crystallization is a metaphysics that are scientifically proven to help relieve stress off of the brain and body. These beautiful healing crystals are also known for bringing clarity of the mind to the owner. Amethyst in particular means spiritual growth and protection. By wearing or using Amethyst crystals, you can become more in tune with your own feelings and get to know your inner self on a much deeper level. It is a gemstone which can bring you calmness, inner peace and is thought to heighten your natural intuition. 

Citrine
Amethysts are known for their ability to reduce addictive traits. The name amethyst is derived from the ancient Greek word “amethustos”, which translates to “not drunk”.  Goblets made of amethyst or in the color purple were used to hinder inebriation. Today, amethysts are used in alternative healing practices for reducing addiction to alcohol, drugs, sex, shopping and a number of other afflictions. Amethyst healing properties can relieve pain and swelling throughout the body by calming the nervous system. Amethyst is well known for having a positive affect against insomnia and nightmares. By placing an amethyst crystal under your bed, you can dispel nightmares and encourage lucid dreaming. For those of you, who think I'm crazy right now, please be open to my thoughts and expression. I do not own the stone Amethyst, but I do own other crystals such as; clear quartz, citrine, black tourmaline, and tiger's eye. With my person experience with the crystals I found accuracy with everything stated. However what you believe in your mind is your destiny. 

Trend or Awareness 



I'm not sure if Tinashe is conscious or simply promoting the conscious trend, but I thought I'd speak on the mixtape. I enjoyed the RnB natural sound that she gives us on the tape, and the features balanced the Amethyst out. I am not a fan of Tinashe, but not because I don't enjoy her music, but because I never really gave her a chance. I've heard great reviews about her debut album Aquarius, and I listened to like one song off of the tape. So I decided to test her out with Amethyst, because the name caught my attention, and I see a lot of potential. No this is not the greatest or even the most memorable tape of all time, but it’s a nice continuance to a growing career. I rate the tape 4 of 5! Overall I enjoyed the songs on Amethyst. 



To Pimp A Butterfly (5/5)


To Pimp a Butterfly is set to release on March 23, 2015. The lead single being "i" gave fans controversial feelings on what to expect from the album. Kendrick also revealed that To Pimp a Butterfly will also have "u," serving as a counter part to the single "i." Curiosities continue, but from the looks and sounds of the title, songs, and cover art of To Pimp a Butterfly, I am expecting the more political side of King Kendrick. The Fader revealed that there is also a fake track-list being spread around. Rolling Stones has already announced Kdot as their next cover feature. L!ve is excited about To Pimp A Butterfly, stay tuned for the review! (updated)

Track list 

1. “Wesley’s Theory”
2. “For Free? (Interlude)”
3. “King Kunta”
4. “Institutionalized”
5. “These Walls”
6. “U”
7. “Alright”
8. “For Sale? (Interlude)”
9. “Momma”
10. “Hood Politics”
11. “How Much a Dollar Cost”
12. “Complexion”
13. “The Blacker the Berry”
14. “You Ain’t Gotta Lie (Momma Said)”
15. “i”
16. “Mortal Man”


Album Review

The highly anticipated To Pimp a Butterfly, released online Tuesday March 17, 2015 has exceeded expectations. Streamed online over 9.6 million times, music lovers field their ears and social media's with Kendrick Lamar's recent album, fans like Christopher Hemmingway, saying "the most artistic hip hop album I've heard in a few years." To Pimp a Butterfly received raved reviews from the major papers across the board, and Live L!ve doesn't disagree. What To Pimp a Butterfly created was a symphony, synchronizing electro funk, the early 80s R&B soul and rap. As predicated Kendrick Lamar took a risk by elevating his style in such a unique manner. 

I admit that I too needed time to adjust to the sounds of the album, but even that doesn't discredit the lyricism and inspirational impact To Pimp a Butterfly has had on music. In songs like complexion, which features North Carolina rapper Rapsody, the two MCs voice their frustration with racial discrimination, the most spoken about problem in our society. Side note; Rapsody absolutely snapped on this song, like who said us female rappers can't have bars like the guys! From Wesley’s Theory to Mortal Man, Kendrick was a poet on To Pimp a Butterfly. The album is a classic, great job Kendrick, hell of a way to validate the claim as king of hip hop, and solidify you as an icon. 
      

The New York TimesTo Pimp a Butterfly is bigger than any minor intra-rapper friction. An album that asks questions as big as this one does, and that will be heard by so many, is a huge taunt to Mr. Lamar’s peers—it’s a dare to ride along, a dare to be different, a dare to be great.


USA Today: Like Kanye West’s monumental Yeezus in 2013, Lamar has made something that feels truly genre-shattering with Butterfly—further cementing his status as not only one of the most innovative rappers, but artists, of the moment. 4/4 

Los Angeles Times: Lamar’s third studio album is a realm away from his breakout 2012 album good kid, m.A.A.d city, equally rich and way, way further gone.

Entertainment Weekly: Kendrick grabs the Best Rapper Alive title by the balls on Butterfly. It’s always satisfying to see superstars reach so high.

New York Daily News: It’s an album meant to be lived with for a long time, making it one of the few recent hip-hop that’s built to last. 5/5

TIME: Lamar wants nothing less than greatness, and To Pimp a Butterfly is yet another step forward on that path.

Chicago Tribune: What’s lacking, if anything, is the potential bounty of singles yielded by good kid, but To Pimp… is designed more as a one-sit continuous listen than a collection of radio-ready hits. 4/4


ABC NewsTo Pimp a Butterfly is a sobering work made with love and endless sonic imagination. It is an incredibly important record that at the same time isn’t afraid to offend. Its aims are above its mere music. It’s a brutally honest, necessary work anchored in social awareness.

 

Play No Games

Released February 24, 2015
 Dark Sky Paradise is the third studio album from Good Music's artist Big Sean. The album lead single "IDFWU," made Dark Sky highly anticipated. The selection of songs that Sean has given us in Dark Sky is pure A1 quality. Dark Sky beats are impressive, accommodating Sean’s' voice and flow. Big Sean has always given fans very solid albums, so I'm not surprised that he delivered. Honestly I didn't like "IDFWU," great beat and extremely catchy, but the song was quite petty and lacked essence in my opinion. "Play No Games" is my favorite song off of the album because, well Big Seam straight snapped on the song. The title of that song is very appropriate, displaying Sean's lyrical side. While having songs like "Paradise" on the album as a nice trap/hood balance. Overall I enjoyed Dark Sky Paradise; this is definitely Big Sean's best album to this date. With that being said I give the album 9 out of 10. Good Job Big Sean!


   Track list to Dark Sky Paradise






1.Dark Sky (Skyscrapers)


2.Blessings


3.All Your Fault


4.I Don't Fuck with You


5.Play No Games


6.Paradise


7.Win Some, Lose Some


8.Stay Down


9.I Know



10.Deep



11.One Man Can Change the World



12.Outro 



Drake Legends 

Drake dropped an unexpected mixtape, how interesting because I recently was talking to a friend saying that "Drake have been ghost for a minute." So, I guess we shared telepathy, Drake. As for the mixtape of course there are great songs and the beats are hard as hell, but Drake I wish you would go back to the bars. Drake As for my rating I give it 8 out of 10. Drake talks subliminally about certain rappers and of course the females in his life. Drake also expresses his current situation and feelings about being the leader in the music industry, the ups and downs. My favorite song on the tape is 6pm in New York, and that doesn't surprise me. Drake proved in this song that he's choosing this new style, because in 6pm he showed the old Drake. Also addressing the problems with label mate Tyga, with that dope beat and flow, is what makes this song my favorite. Any time Drake writes a song with a time and a city on it, fans already know that the song will be one to remember. My all time favorite is still 9am in Dallas, that's forever a classic. Drake is a solidified legend, but I just want to hear the metaphors, the entendres, the A1 similes etc... "The lack of effort got me rapping different" Drake himself knows that he's not putting out his best work, as I quote those very words from NWTS. 

There were debates if this was in fact an album, but Drake solidified "if you're reading this," as a mixtape via twitter. The culture and hip hop genre is shifting and I am sure Drake not only knows this, but as one of the causes of the development. It’s official that this is only the beginning of the Toronto era. With all of the ongoing controversy inside of the Cash Money label, fans like myself, question if this mixtape is the last project released under the Young Money/Cash Money label. However Drake is his own verb and genre. This gives fans, like myself anticipation for the album 6 God.  

(Updated) After further review of the Drake's "if you're read this it’s too late," I still believe Drake could be more lyrical. However Drake song writing skills are the Picasso of hip hop songs still. The way songs like Legends are organized to express his growth. Drake's mixtape is quite the perfect balance of tempo for the beginning and ending of a new season. I can foresee the change in this era soon to come. 

Lyrically the order is
5am in Toronto > 6 pm in New York > 9 am in Dallas




B4.Da.$$


Brooklyn native Joey BadA$$ celebrated his 20th birthday with the release of his debut album B4.Da.$$ on January 20, 2015. The highly anticipated independent artist meets all expectations with the album, expressing his upbringing and societal value of the dollar bill. Joey has definitely brought back that legendary New York sound in songs like "Hazeus View" and the single "Christ Conscious." Audiences have given mixed reviews, some saying he has "sold out," while others are calling the album a classic. I understand both views, being that Joey is known to have classic lyricism like in his classic mixtape 1999. B4.Da.$$ doesn't show his true lyricism, however the album is a great album, proving that Joey can develop music far beyond just bars. I would not say Joey has "sold out." Good job Joey hell of a way to bring the New Year in!

is available now! iTunes:   Amazon:

Track list

1."Save the Children"  Statik Selektah3:35
2."Greenbax" (Introlude)Lee Bannon0:48
3."Paper Trail$"  DJ Premier3:17
4."Piece of Mind"  Freddie Joachim3:38
5."Big Dusty"  Kirk Knight4:53
6."Hazeus View"  Kirk Knight3:39
7."Like Me" (featuring BJ the Chicago Kid)J Dilla, The Roots4:28
8."Belly of the Beast" (featuring Chronixx)Hit-Boy3:56
9."No. 99"  Statik Selektah2:46
10."Christ Conscious"  Basquiat2:53
11."On & On" (featuring Maverick Sabre and Dyemond Lewis)Freddie Joachim4:40
12."Escape 120" (featuring Raury)Chuck Strangers3:47
13."Black Beetles"  Chuck Strangers3:50
14."O.C.B."  Samiyam, The Soul Rebels3:43
15."Curry Chicken"  Statik Selektah3:33



2014 Forest Hill Drive

Roc Nation's J. Cole announced his upcoming surprise album release via twitter on Nov. 16, 204. Tweeting the cover art, the name, and the release date...



J. Cole once called the savior of hip hop has yet to deliver a platinum album to his fans. His debut album Cole World was a disappointment to his fans that knew him from mixtapes like Friday Night Lights. The sophomore album Born Sinner deemed once again worthy by his fans, but still not platinum or a classic. So in my opinion this is the finally straw J. Cole you have to give your true fans that classic album. Drake has Take Care, Kendrick has Section 80, and now you need a classic to officially claim you’re thrown. I believe in Cole, don't let us down again.


Alongside of the album J. Cole has a fan contest that will give you a chance to meet Cole and go to the album listening at his Fayetteville home. Good Luck

(Updated Review)
J. Cole gives his fans exactly what they were craving for, and receives his first platinum album. This is the J. Cole that we fell in love with, minus the harmonizing he used on 2014 Forest Hill. Cole of course discusses with us very relate able topics in a sequence that keeps you listening in songs like "Wet Dreamz." While having inspirational and club bangers with songs like the single "Apparently" and "A Tale of 2 Cities." Good Job Cole, in keeping your fans happy and anxious for your next album. 2014 Forest Hill Drive 8 out of 10.

#1 Digital Album on BillBoard

Released: March 3, 2014


Rick Ross Mastermind 



Rick Ross latest album Mastermind might finally solidify him as a Top contender in the Hip Hop industry. Peaking at #1 on Billboard digital albums, over Pharrell, Lea Michele, Schoolboy Q, Soundtrack, Lorde and more!  Released on March 3, 2014, the album features some of Hip Hop's heavy hitters such as; Jay-ZJeezyThe WeekndKanye WestBig SeanMeek MillLil WayneFrench Montana, Diddy, and more. Could this be Ricky Rozay first platinum album and/or Grammy? Leading with the hit single "Devil is a Lie" featuring Jay-Z, Rick Ross has topped the digital album charts on Billboard. This will be the first time for the rapper to do this. It's amazing that he's charted over Pharrell's GIRL, especially with all the attention being on Pharrell lately. 

Rick Ross has always been that guy in hip hop who does just enough to stay relevant, but not enough to give him the Top MC credit or sales to match. Yes, Rick Ross does not have a Platinum album, he's a gold man. However this is not a bad thing, gold albums allow you to maintain a consistent fan base. Mastermind would be Rick Ross 6th studio album, and by the looks of it, this will be the album to finally get him to cross over. I enjoyed Mastermind overall the album has great production, and a solid delivery from the rapper. Congratulations to Rick Ross! 

Track list for Mastermind


1."Intro"  
2."Rich Is Gangsta"  

3."Drug Dealer's Dream"  

4."Shots Fired"  
5."Nobody" (featuring French Montana)

6."The Devil Is a Lie" (featuring Jay-Z)

7."Mafia Music III" (featuring Sizzla and Mavado)
8."War Ready" (featuring Jeezy)

9."What a Shame" (featuring French Montana)


10."Supreme"  


11."BLK & WHT"  


12."Dope Bitch" (Skit)
13."In Vein" (featuring The Weeknd)


14."Sanctified" (featuring Kanye West and Big Sean)

15."Walkin' on Air" (featuring Meek Mill)


16."Thug Cry" (featuring Lil Wayne)


Rick Ross ft. (Jay-Z) - Devil is a Lie





Good Kid M.a.a.D City

Kendrick Lamar's "Good Kid m.A.A.d City" has been released for about 2 weeks now and has been a hit so far. This narrative album is, as you may have picked up by now, is a story of a day in the life of Kendrick Lamar. More-so, a collage of events. It's amazing how this album comes together as a story. IT would take too long for me to explain the album in its entirety. Just know that Kendrick was pussy-whipped on Sherane, and that Kendrick Lamar's mamma probably never got her van back. Anywho, Compton's human sacrifice has put up good numbers in his first week, as he sold well over 241,000 copies in his first week, falling short only of Taylor Swift (who's soul is still under Kanye West's ownership) who has already gone platinum. Don't believe me?


I'm not gonna lie to you, Kendrick's my favorite artist right now. He my nigga and all, but I expected Section 80 to shit on GKMC prior to its release, ya bish. I didn't expect a flop from Kendrick, just didn't expect God to personally tell us, "I'm gonna bless you niggas with this masterpiece". But he did. This album offers a range and variety of songs to fans of different hip-hop genres. For the niggas who don't care about lyrics, and just want to ride..."Money Trees", "Swimming Pools", "Backseat Freestyle", "Bitch, Don't Kill My Vibe", and maybe "The Recipe" is for you. You can even turn on the first half of "m.A.A.d City". Those are songs that you can blast as loudly as you please in your car without getting self-conscious. Shyne may disagree, but who cares? (See video on the right). If you're one of those people that call yourself a "hip-hop head" and enjoy lyricism, turn on "Real" and  the Pharell-produced "Good Kid" as Kendrick drops lyrical bombshells in his bars. If you want to hear solid story-telling (disregarding the fact that the whole album is a story), "The Art of Peer "Sing About Me, I'm Dying of Thirst" would be an ideal song for you as he tells multiple stories of people in his life in Compton. The versatility in this album makes it unrivaled by many of the albums of 2012 AND 2011. It is nearly impossible to dislike, whether you listen to Future, or Mos Def. It's definitely a must that you cop this album. Support good music.

Overall, Kendrick dropped a jewel. This, to me, is the album of the year so far. If J. Cole got nominated for a Grammy with "Cole World: The Sideline Story", I'm sure we will see Compton's savior stumbling over words at his Grammy acceptance speech. It's only a matter of time. Hip-Hop isn't dead. Stop being nostalgic. Good hip-hop is back on the rise in full effect.

Good Kid, m.A.A.d City: 4.5 out of 5

Follow the L!ve Page @LiveLiLiBlog

-@CjayTheGreat

Comments

  1. the music reviews are awesome! But sometimes it seem a little bias #justsayimg

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