Review: Future's "Monster"

Part of Future’s appeal lies in a musically indefinable existence. While both Pluto (and the 3D version) and Honest became somewhat of a set template for artists like Travi$ Scott,...

  • Review: Future's "Monster"
    12,667 Views
    24 Likes15 Dislikes
    Part of Future’s appeal lies in a musically indefinable existence. While both Pluto (and the 3D version) and Honest became somewhat of a set template for artists like Travi$ Scott, Future himself is a blend of the past, some not so distant. Given his early tutelage under first cousin Rico Wade, of Organized Noize, whom Future credits with “masterminding” his sound, the...
  • Review: Tinashe's "Aquarius"
    14,667 Views
    21 Likes2 Dislikes
    It's funny how music comes full circle. Tinashe was just eight years old when Aaliyah Haughton tragically died in a plane crash, causing the music world to mourn and R&B to be reconstructed in her wake.  Since then, though, R&B has gone through a lot. There has been your Jagged Edge's and your Ne-Yo's, fusing pop hooks with soulful voices and sexual flare. However, I believe the...
  • Review: Rick Ross' "Mastermind" Album
    52,735 Views
    61 Likes18 Dislikes
    In the last two years between his last album and now, Rick Ross has been through a lot, including surviving a targeted hit on his life. Critics bashed God Forgives, I Don’t and many wondered if Ross had peaked too soon and lost his touch. After numerous setbacks and delays, the bawse is back with his sixth album to prove that he’s a man with nine lives and a rapper with hits for...
  • Review: Travi$ Scott's "Days Before Rodeo"
    22,640 Views
    71 Likes6 Dislikes
    The most gratifying events in music are the moments where you can literally hear the construction in the artist’s mind, the building onto the promise of greatness. While not a guarantee, Days Before Rodeo provides the listener with the glimpses of the incredible, long-ranging capabilities of Travi$ Scott. Scott has been bubbling from below, as both an MC and as a notable producer,...
  • Review: Wiz Khalifa's "Blacc Hollywood"
    41,157 Views
    37 Likes29 Dislikes
    We all know the story with Wiz and his albums, it's a tale as old as time. He goes super, extra hard on his mixtapes to shut up the critics who talked bad about his albums, only to make some of the same mistakes on the next album. It's a vicious cycle, that we're only escaping gradually, in baby steps. Rolling Papers was what the label wanted Wiz to be, and he acknowledged and atoned for...
  • Review: Joell Ortiz's House Slippers
    10,822 Views
    18 Likes3 Dislikes
    Joell Ortiz changed this album’s title from Yaowa, basically because this is him at his most comfortable. In Hip Hop, getting too comfortable can sometimes lead to a decline in effort due to loss of hunger. Anyone familiar with Joell Ortiz would probably find it hard to imagine him not putting effort into a project, comfortable or not. Joell is always known for remarkable lyricism and...
  • Review: Mac Miller's "Faces"
    37,430 Views
    73 Likes4 Dislikes
    Have you ever seen the viral video of Susan Boyle performing for the first time on Britain’s Got Talent? A superficially unattractive older woman walks out onto the stage to perform a song before hundreds of people and four judges. Before she even gets an opportunity to sing, the crowd is halfway out their seats with laughter. Then she opened her mouth and silenced all haters. Mac...
  • Review: Bishop Nehru & MF DOOM's "NehruvianDOOM"
    11,568 Views
    16 Likes6 Dislikes
    In superhero literature, it's not uncommon for an aging master like Bruce Wayne to find himself a protégé. Often arriving at our hero's lowest point -- after the death in the family or, perhaps, a critical injury -- this stranger inspires the hero to get back to doing what he does best: fighting crime and selling a ton of movie theater tickets. No matter how much he...
  • Review: DJ Mustard "10 Summers"
    18,066 Views
    20 Likes7 Dislikes
    Dijon McFarlane, aka DJ Mustard, is a Los Angeles born and raised producer of seemingly all of the most important tracks you’ve heard over the past year. While that statement is obvious hyperbole, his influence on the rap stratosphere is not, and cannot be overstated. When you have producers jack what you’ve made hot, for another artist (cough, Iggy Azalea), with no shame, it means...
  • Review: Migos' "No Label 2"
    24,593 Views
    19 Likes4 Dislikes
    Migos’ style is something like a basketball point guard. The person at the position doesn’t need to master every aspect of the game and probably won’t — rebounding just isn’t his thing. But the person’s shortcomings are hidden by how exceedingly good he is or has to be in a few other skills, whether it’s ball handling or calling plays. Migos will probably...
  • Review: Ab-Soul's "These Days..."
    38,444 Views
    59 Likes16 Dislikes
    Ab-Soul is a complex artist. The Carson, California native and Top Dawg Entertainment signee has overcome a number of major tribulations throughout the course of his life. And while all artists experience ups-and-downs that become points of growth for them as people while shaping the music they create, Ab-Soul's ups-and-downs are unique to most. On his deeply moving, autobiographical track "Book...
  • Review: Wiz Khalifa's "28 Grams"
    41,288 Views
    35 Likes41 Dislikes
    Like any Wiz project, there will be a wide variety of opinions on 28 Grams, ranging from exuberant praise to vitriolic disdain. This variance in opinion is common for Young Khalifa, as Wiz has been riding the same strange roller coaster as Weezy the last few years, delivering excellent mixtape projects like Taylor Allderdice and Cabin Fever 2 while disappointing most with his retail...
  • Review: PARTYNEXTDOOR "PARTYNEXTDOOR TWO"
    28,107 Views
    26 Likes8 Dislikes
    PARTYNEXTDOOR is Canadian rising star Jahron Brathwaite, formerly a producer of soft, sunny R&B with EDM inflections. His first wide release under the new name represented a new label situation, through signing with Drake’s OVO Sound, and a fully realized change in sound and lyrical content. Taking a sexually aggressive tone, with dark, bass heavy atmospheres, PARTYNEXTDOOR combines it...
  • Review: August Alsina's "Testimony"
    30,916 Views
    39 Likes7 Dislikes
    2014 has been quite the year for debut albums thus far. Already, we’ve seen debut studio LPs from Cali artists Kid Ink, ScHoolboy Q, and YG. Now, about a year after he first splashed into mainstream Hip-hop/R&B, New Orleans singer August Alsina delivers his Def Jam debut album, Testimony. In 2013, Alsina released the radio-buzzing single “I Luv This Shit” featuring labelmate...
  • Review: Kid Cudi's "Satellite Flight: The Journey To Mother Moon"
    43,758 Views
    28 Likes10 Dislikes
    Although none of his albums have really been critical hits, Kid Cudi’s main appeal is using outside, atypical influences and sounds to articulate some sort of emotional journey into the tortured soul. He’s connected with his young adult audience by embodying this idea of the discontent, rebellious youth with some sticky hooks for good measure — can one ever truly get “Day...
  • Review: Run the Jewels' (Killer Mike & El-P) "RTJ2"
    8,530 Views
    29 Likes7 Dislikes
    El-P was first brought to Killer Mike's studio to commission a beat, or two, for Mike’s R.A.P. Music. This was 2011, and Adult Swim creative director Jason DeMarco, the mutual connection, couldn't have possibly foreseen the two-headed beast he just spawned. By the end of the session, Mike knew he’d found the sole producer for his next album....
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