Like Father, Like Son is a collaborative studio album by Birdman and Lil Wayne that came out almost twelve years ago on Cash Money & Universal Records. Frankly speaking, I consider it a classic and could care less if others think an album has to go platinum to be thought of like that. Is it the best? No, there are older albums and ones out right now that I’d choose over this, but nonetheless, I love it, partially because it features reputable stars like T-Pain, Fat Joe, and Snoop. Digging into the tracks, the album starts with “Loyalty,” that they take to mean something like family, respect, and not taking bullshit (but not giving any either, unless it’s deserved). After the first music track is […]

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4:44

Jay-Z 444 Cover

4:44 is catchy even though I only gravitate personally to a few of the songs on the album. Jay-Z tells it all on these tracks though. He’s the father. He’s the cheating husband. Hov reveals a lot and I appreciate the content and honest message of empowerment he gives to the black community. What other rapper is promoting being financially responsible and strengthening marital and family bonds (you know, after you cheat)? Yeah, most artists aren’t giving this message because they’re only rapping about money, sex, bitches, and drugs. I believe this album’ll grow on me and be one of my favorites when it’s all said and done. Maybe 4:44 will get other big artists to make some more interesting, conscious albums. […]

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4:44

Jay-Z 444 Cover

Pictured, me listening to 4:44 Photo Source – Musée Rodin 4:44 is a diary entry and a great piece of social commentary. The jury is still out on if it’s a good listen. Jay went in an interesting direction with the music, using it as a jumping point for detailed and cinematic videos with hard-to-pinpoint storylines. I’m not exactly sure how the eleven minute video for Legacy relates to the 2:57 song that shares its name. The connection is clearer in Smile, a song that skips from discussing his mother’s sexuality to blood diamonds, jealousy, and therapy – a busy track to say the least. The other songs on the album feel more like part of Jay’s project to give his listeners’ game at $9.99 than […]

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I don’t really get the hype. Sure, Cole is good, but I don’t get hip-hop-philes’ obsession with Forest Hills Drive. My first encounter with Cole didn’t even directly involve him, as much as the memes Cole Stans would throw around about how he went platinum with no features: Photo Source – Original tweet deleted These memes escalated to even circle jerkier versions. Folks outchea calling him the GOAT and I’m like: Photo Source – Brian Blacka$$ on vine Its like a reverse of my relationship to 2Pac’s music. When I listen to Pac’s shit, even if for the first time, it felt familiar because, well, its fucking 2Pac. The expectation of greatness is grounded in the historical context of the music itself. Cole is still new […]

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What is Kanye without controversy, really? Before reviewing College Dropout, I’d like to suggest no Kanye album discussion is complete without using his life as a touchstone. We have Ye’s almost fatal car crash for College Dropout, his coming to fame in Graduation, extreme loss in 808’s and Heartbreak, and so on. There’s even recognition of this in The Life of Pablo’s I Love Kanye, a fun track where he catalogues a list of his and his fan’s recollections. “Ok, cool Knehmo. You keep doing these unnecessary asides. One, why is this relevant, and two, can you just get to the damn album review? You’re writing like you have a word count to reach or something.” – Disinterested Reader Well Disinterested Reader, first off—damn, that […]

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Aquemini

Outkast Aquemini Cover

Is it my favorite OutKast album? No; I definitely didn’t like it as much as I thought I would. It’s too mellow and a few tracks just stretch on too long for my taste. Maybe that says something about my attention span being a little sort, but playing this album from start to finish was rough. The beats are relaxing though, and the song “SpottieOttieDopalicious” does the long and slow vibe perfectly, so even if the album isn’t my thing, that track is. I love OutKast, but guess the people who can listen to this all day, everyday, and I just aren’t the same. […]

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Here are my favorite Kendrick Lamar albums, ranked in order of importance: 1) good kid, mA.A.d city 2) good kid, mA.A.d city 3) To Pimp A Butterfly 4) DAMN. good kid, mA.A.d city is listed at #2 for its sheer replay value, and is at #1 for the memories I associate with it. The best albums are the ones we make special through experience and the meaning we tie to them. GKMC dropped in 2012, sometime during my freshman or sophomore year of college. Parties were hype with drunken choralists and fraternity stepping when Swimming Pools dropped. During that time, there wasn’t a better song to binge drink to beside LMFAO and Lil John’s Shots released a year earlier, and even that’s a maybe. My […]

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Hip Hop Is Dead

Nas - Hiphop is Dead cover

Hip Hop Is Dead is like the sun coming out when it’s cloudy when you compare it to the almost-garbage albums that seem to show up every day. Nas is definitely the illest MC there is and still came through with a hit 12 years after his main album. Even though he’s never had the commercial success of someone like Jay, he deserves it because albums like this one have some of the most creative and original work that I’ve ever heard. I listened to this album twice, back-to-back, and still wanted more. If you don’t agree this album is hot, you should probably just go back to “In My White Tee” on repeat. Nas is the sort of music you have to listen to […]

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Greatest Hits

2pac Greatest Hits Cover

“Honestly 2Pac is overrated!” – He’s the only rapper that fully says what’s on his mind and in my opinion that’s exactly what made him the best rapper in the world. This album-set is incredible and would make a great starting point for anyone interested in learning 2Pac’s music. I gravitate to “Changes,” one of the tracks that’s new on this album, but “Dear Mama” (First on All Eyez on Me) isn’t bad either, you know. I honestly think the kids of today should listen to this album since it embodies and pulls off the “I don’t care, imma say what’s on my mind” attitude. Overall, if you listen to these songs, especially tracks like “Changes,” you can see how much truth he brings in […]

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I first heard of this project through its singles, and thought they were good but definitely not great. Once the album released, I completely change my mind. This album must be consumed as a whole. As with Section.80, Kendrick preforms like a storyteller on every track, but this album surpasses that project in cohesion, production, and imagery. The cover of the album says “A Short Film by Kenrick Lamar” and that’s exactly what it feels like. You’re listening to the whole thing, but also watching a young man grow up in Compton and getting a look at his external and internal struggles. Even tracks like “Backstreet Freestyle” make perfect sense in the project and feel instantly recognizable to anyone who’s ever wasted time with their […]

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