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A Defensive Stance

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December 2016

Passion Pain and Demon Slayin Review

Kid Cudi has had one interesting 2016.  The Ohio Native had a highly publicized beef with Drake and Kanye.  Scott also checked himself into rehab for suicidal urges, many were surprised at this decision and an outburst of support from many of his fans.  After his album Speedin’ Bullet to Heaven, dropped in late 2015 to terrible reviews and dismal sales, many people had given up on Scott Mescudi.  Did he deliver with Passion, Pain And Demon Slayin’, or is it another flop?

Cudi has returned in rare form on this LP. I haven’t been impressed by a Kid Cudi album since Man on the Moon II and I was skeptical if Cudi would ever make a good record again.  The instrumentation and how he incorporated all of the sounds and verses to make this project blew me away.  He structured the song like a film, like his first two albums which I have been waiting for.  The only gripe I had with this album was the song Releaser, I felt that it had no place on the album and that it could have been left off of the project.  On some of the tracks Cudi’s singing can be off-key and come off as lazy.  Despite my problems with the album I thoroughly enjoyed the project.

I was amazed at how Cudi crafted some of these tracks.  None of the features feel forced, they all feel organic and cohesive. Willow smith added an amazing touch to Rose Golden, and Andre 3000 gave two phenomenal verses on By Design, and The Guide.  The project was sort of long, I do wish it could have been cut a little bit shorter.  But none the less, Scott Mescudi took us on an adventure through his mind, in a beautiful in elegant fashion.  Passion Pain and Demon Slayin’ is the Kid Cudi album that his fans have been waiting for, for years.

 

Favorite Tracks: Rose Golden, By Design, Frequency, Baptized in Fire

 

Score: 4.5/5

 

What did you think of Passion, Pain & Demon Slayin’ ? Did you Love it, Hate It? Let me know what you think.  Happy Holidays everyone!

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4 Your Eyez Only Review

J. Cole is one of the most polarizing figures in rap music today.  After the enormous success of 2014 Forrest Hills Drive, Jermaine went ghost,staying out of the public eye with many speculating that Cole was retiring.One morning I received a text from a close friend of mine telling me that Cole had a album dropping next week. I was ecstatic as 2014 Forrest Hills Drive is one of my favorite albums ever. Did this album live up to expectations or was it just audio Ny-Quil?

The beginning track reeled me in and I was very pleased with what I got.  Smooth production and Cole was actually interesting the production was smooth and I was actually interested in what he was saying.  Immortal continues the streak of tracks I actually found pleasant.  I didn’t find myself bored or thinking about how much longer I had left in the album.  But when Deja Vu came on I loved the production and beat, but Cole doesn’t suite the track well.  I did enjoy the hook, but other than that I wasn’t impressed.  From here on out until Immortal I heard a slew of tracks that bored me to tears. Things picked up at the song Neighbors, the beat was infectious and I found my self singing the hook.  The way Jermaine was rapping was phenomenal I enjoyed the variety and lyrics.  After Neighbors I wasn’t impressed until the last track 4 Your Eyez Only.

I was let down by this album.  It was boring and it just didn’t keep my interest.  The dullness of this record had me struggling to pay attention.  At times I had to force myself not to fall asleep and pay attention.  I understand why people would like this album but I did not move me. While the message is great and powerful that doesn’t make up for the bland execution  of this record.

Favorite Tracks: Immortal, Neighbors

Score: 2/5

What did you think of this album did you love it ? Did you hate it? Let me know what you all think.  Stay warm out there and Happy Holidays! Be safe out there!

Starboy Review

After the Grammy award-winning album Beauty Behind The Madness helped him become a household name, many people including myself were wondering how The Weeknd would top his last album.  After the announcement of his latest album Starboy, I was impressed by the slew of singles he released.  The Weeknd has been one of my favorite artist since his first few mix-tapes, and I was excited for Starboy. Did Abel deliver or did he just get caught up in the hype?

Image result for starboy album cover

Abel experimented with his sound instead of sticking with the dark moody sounds of his mix-tapes.  I appreciated how he tried  to grow as an artist, but some of these songs were just god-awful.  Rockin’ and Secrets should have never made it onto this album, nor anywhere to be honest. The pre-chorus vocals made me angry, and the lyrics are less than terrible. Lana Del Ray is awful, I always try to find the good in artist and be open-minded but she is garbage, and her interlude is pointless.  Abel has some of the most cringe-worthy lines I’ve heard in recent memory. ” David Carradine, i’ma die when I cum”, “Got a sweet asian chick, she go low mane”,just to name a few.  I want to know who in The Weeknd’s camp let these corny ass lines fly.  Aside from the title track I don’t think Abel and Daft Punk mesh well, it seems forced and contrived.  The song with Future was boring and it almost put me to sleep. I have no idea what they were trying to go for here.  Future sounded uninterested and like he didn’t even want to be on the track.  The Weeknd does he thing on this track but I feel as though Future could have been left off of it.

Aside from all my gripes this was a very enjoyable album.  True Colors is one of the most beautiful songs I have heard this year.  Sidewalk is a great track and Kendrick Lamar gives a phenomenal verse.  The production is amazing throughout the entire project.  Abel is an amazing singer with great vocal range.  His voice demands your attention and is beautiful.  My biggest gripe with this project is it’s not consistent.  There will be a good couple tracks and then a streak of mediocre and terrible tracks.  But the good outweighs the bad and I enjoyed it.  I do wish he would have cut down some of these tracks the album is way too long.  Abel could have took off at least 5 tracks off of this to make it flow more and make it more cohesive.  I enjoyed this album overrall.

 

Score 3/5

Favorite Tracks: Party Monster, Reminder, Sidewalk, True Colors

How did you like Starboy? Did you love it or hate it? Let me know what you think. I hope everyone is being safe and getting ready for the holidays. God Bless.

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