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Monday, 23 April 2018 16:16

J Cole makes statement with KOD [Album Review]

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J Cole returns after a 2 year long hiatus, with KOD. Announcing the release in the same week that it dropped, it was yet another surprise album from Cole. Cole has proven his star power to be big enough to where he can announce a album with little to no promo and still do numbers. The album has already broken spotify and Apple music records.

This certainly has established his legend status, making him one of the biggest rappers to come from the Millenial generation. Even superstar rappers like LOGIC have given Cole his props

 

Now, let's get into the actual music. Much like Jay-Z's "4:44" of last year, this "KOD" album feels like it will be at the forefront of "Grown Folks" Hip-hop for 2018. The album makes a statement on the current state of Hip-hop and the effects of drug use and it's promotion on society. KOD stands for three different titles:

1) Kidz On Drugs

2) King OverDose

3) Kill Our Demons

The albums ultimate themes tackle topics ranging from depression and anxiety to addiction and consumerism. The album begins with a jazzy intro infused with a poem about pain and how to deal with it. The opening musical track, "KOD", sets the tone for what the majority of the album will sound like: modern trap beats and flows fused with lyrical raps. For me personally, its the best thing ever! I love mumble rap just as much as conscious rap. That being said, its dope to hear the trap sound with CRAZY Lyrical bars. The "KOD" song establishes his "King" status with braggodocio raps about not needing features, talking about stacking "Ms", and going "Hard as Sh!t". 

 

The following song, "Photograph", is an interesting love ballad about falling for a instagram model. I never thought that someone could make a song about that and it be deep and introspective, yet thats what Cole does. In the song he raps, "Love today's gone digital and Its Fu%#k!ing with my health". The song is a analyzation on the culture surrounding social media and dating in 2018. 

 

The songs "The Cut Off", "Kevin's Heart", "Once an Addict", and "FRIENDS" all tackle the subjects of addiction and drug culture and its effects on people and society. While, songs such as "BRACKETS" and "ATM" talk about consumerism and the negative effect that money and the need to "Stunt" is having on the youth.

 

Cole ends the album with "1985", which is arguably the most popular song from the album, given the way it has shaken up the industry for its offense to many in the younger generation of rappers. Cole doesn't name drop directly, but many think that he was specifically speaking to teen rap sensation, Lil Pump. Throughout the song, Cole directly addresses the current youth of rappers who are more concerned with getting money ,tattoos, and slaying broads, rather than being a postive influence for their peers. He speaks to them from the place of not only a grown man, but a grown man who has been in the industry for 10+ years, now. He litterally said nothing disrespectful, in my opinion. And as a matter of fact, he genuinely was just trying to help them! 

 

All in all, I have to say that this is probably my favorite Cole album. Its between "KOD" and "Forest Hills Drive . That being said, theres no denying that this is Cole's most IMPORTANT project to date. It comes out in a time where I feel like even though its not a message that WANTS to be heard by the youth, its a message that NEEDS to be heard. And though, there are many who are offended, hopefully they can listen to this project 5 years from now and see that Cole was coming from a place of worry and not disrespect.

 

Thanks again for your time as always, thanks!

 

Listen to KOD now: http://smarturl.it/KODJCole

Connect with J. Cole:
Instagram:
https://www.instagram.com/realcoleworld/
Twitter:
https://twitter.com/jcolenc
Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/JColeMusic/

 

 

- Max Ataraxsis 

Popular New York rapper, Cardi B, is having one of the best weekends in Hip-hop in recent memory. The star, who broke into the industry last year with her Hit Single "Bodak Yellow" ,is proving to all of the naysayers that she's here for the long haul. Even after dropping hit after hit (Billboard source), there were people who doubted she could deliver a solid album. Cardi, throughout her come up, has been highly aware of the pressure to make a strong debut. If you peruse on through her social media, you can see that creating the album and making a good product was really stressing her out. Luckily, she had friends in the industry, such as J cole, to help encourage her (VladTV Source).

Well, I know that a weight has been lifted off the raptresses chest after all of the long hours and hard work, because this past friday, she dropped her album, and thus broke the internet! 

There were a lot of factors that lead up to Cardi breaking the internet, factors such as : The fake beef with Nicki Minaji, The infidelity of her fiance, or the pregnancy rumors that turned out to be true having the big reveal on Saturday Night Live. It's been always something that consistently kept Cardi in the headlines. That being said, the ultimate reason that Cardi has been so popular is because of her charismatic, down to earth, personality. That and most importantly, the fact that her music is actually good!

You couldn't log into any social media with out seeing her face, this weekend! The whole industry is in support of and talking about her album (You can check out her instagram to see the full list of cosigns). People you would expect, such as her collaborators, Chance the Rapper & YG. But also, people you would not expect such as Oprah! I was suprised about the Oprah cosign because Oprah has a history of not being in support of rap and Hip-Hop artist.

The album starts out with the track "Get Up 10" which really sets the tone for the album. No catchy hooks or bubble gum lyrics. Cardi starts the album with straight up bars! The track is reminiscent to the popular early 2000s New York Hip-Hop Era where rappers like 50 Cent and Lloyd Banks would just hit us with the bars about living the street life and grinding to get what's yours. Following the opener, you get three Club bangers back to back. Drip featuring the MIGOS, BODAK YELLOW, and BickenHead. These type of tracks are stylistically more what she's known for and are strong assets to the energy of the LP. Following these tracks is when it gets interesting. Cardi's latest single "Be Careful" is a huge switch in tone as Cardi delivers a mellow R&B infused track about dealing with the infidelity of a lover. Following that, the Chance The Rapper assisted, "Best Life", sonically gives us a new sound from Cardi that we had not heard prior to the album.  Chance The Rapper's signature Soul Hop sound is all over this track, as Cardi raps about overcoming all of the adversity she faced to now be living her best life. In another switch in tone and Energy, track number 7, "I Like It" Ft Bad Bunny & J Balvin, is a reggaeton jam that will most likely have us dancing all summer long! Check out this hilarious video of DIDDY dancing to the song: Diddy Bop. This song, in my opinion, is so dope because the majority of it is in spanish, with some english thrown in the mix. Normally, its the other way around with songs being in mostly English, with some spanish words thrown in. I didn't know what they were saying but I felt it,though!

Track 8, Ring featuring Kehlani, is a relatable song about lovers who are growing apart. This being a song for the ladies, lyrics such as, "You dont hit my line no more, oh, you don't make it ring" are sure to be written in many tumblr post and tweets from women across the world. It's dope to see two popular woman artist coming together to make a anthem for their millions of fans world-wide. With all the beefs going on in Hip-Hop these days, its great to see the unity.

The following three tracks get back to the hype, turnt up Cardi that the world has come to know and love. Money Bag, She Bad, and Bartier Cardi are all bangers that are sure to be getting lots of radio play and club spins in the coming summer months. Cardi closes her album with two more songs for the ladies in "Through your phone" and "I Do" Ft SZA. The SZA feature was unexpected for me personally, but it ended up being one of my favorite songs on the record!

All in All, Cardi's debut is a strong record with dope features, a concrete concept, and greatly executed vision. I throughly enjoy this album and have many of the songs in my everyday playlist , now. I know the record hits even harder for the women out there.

I'm going to end on this note. Whenever I make a song and I say something kind of "sexist", I always hope that my female audience will translate it to relate to them, personally. For example, I have a line that goes: "Not trusting a B!t$h if She's Bad, But she's acting so basic" . I would hope that my women audience can relate to in the manner of, "Not trusting a N!gg@ if he's bad, but he's acting so basic".  Another example would be, "And If you act like a Douche, might take your girl up in the booth". I would hope that my female audience can translate that to something along the lines of : " and if she acts like a douche, might take her N!gg@ up in the booth" . I hope I'm making sense here, lol. 

Basically, the point of me saying all that is because Cardi B has given women the opportunity to first hand have this same rapper mentality, but from a actual woman viewpoint. Lyrics such as, " I left that N!gga on read cause I felt like it!" and "Pu$$y so good, I say my own name during sex" give ladies acrcoss the world the confidence and boss chick mentality that Cardi has, thus having her audience live vicariously through her music. 

I imagine this album is going to carry Cardi through the remainder of the year but I am definitely looking forward to when she starts making new music! All in all Id give this album a 5/5. From a statistical standpoint, Every song mattered and was entertaining and worth it on this record. There were no filler songs, or songs that you might want to skip, so that is my reasoning for rating it so high. However, thats just my opinion, though! Let me know what you guys think in the comments!

 

 Links Below:

 Cardi B - Invasion of Privacy 

Stream/Download:
Exclusive Bardi Gang merchandise available here: http://smarturl.it/BardiGangMerchYT
 
Follow Cardi B

 

Sunday, 08 April 2018 18:10

Thanks for Reading!

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Despite the insurmountable amount of controversy surrounding XXXTentacion, his music continues to light up the charts. His latest project "?" is doing impressive numbers,  scoring the #1 Hip-Hop album two weeks in a row. 

Week 1: 131,000 Sales - 

20,000 Traditional Sales. 106,000 Streams.

Week 2: 76,302 Sales -

4,262 Traditional Album Sales. 72,040 Streams.

 

Most rappers these days don't attain even 70k streams on a mixtape or album release, so for X to be doing these numbers on his SECOND week is quite impressive. The thing that I think is really working for X is that he is really reaching out and resonating with his target audience. His tartget audience at the "emo" kids and rap rock and pop punk type audience.

 

I remember a few months ago, X passionately, yet naively stated that he was better than Tupac. Some may deem him delusional. Some may actually agree with him ( They were probably born in the 2000s lol). I know one thing , though. When he said it, whether its true or not, he believed it; and that energy moved him forward.

His reasoning for him being better than Tupac was that he was more diverse than Tupac. I personally don't think that is fair because Tupac died in his mid 20s. Who knows how Tupac would have evolved? Pac could have gotten into all kinds of different ventures had he been given the chance to continue living.

 

The reason I mention all of this is because it leads me into this question. Does Diversity actually = Better?

 

Well, after Listening through the tape, X definitely proves diverse. His mix of different genres such as emo rock and classic 90s hip-hop showcases his influences influence on his own music in the best of ways. When it comes to the question of does diversity equal better? If not better, at least impressive. 

 

I think that the "SoundCloud Rapper" Label that many in the community used to assign to X is now being revoked. He's earned the respek on his name. He has been trying to get his act together, he's been doing numbers, and staying postive. Hopefully the rising superstar can stay out of trouble and just focus on the music and good vibes.

 

Thanks for tuning in as always ! 

 

Links:

"?" - All Streaming Platforms

https://xxxtentacion.lnk.to/NEWALBUM

Social Media

https://twitter.com/xxxtentacion

https://www.facebook.com/BadVibezForever/

https://www.instagram.com/xxxtentacion/?hl=en

 

- Max Ataraxis

Wednesday, 04 April 2018 20:45

Max Ataraxis

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Lil Yatchy drops off his highly anticipated mixtape “Lil Boat II” , and I say highly anticipated for two reasons.

 

  1. “Lil Boat” is Yatchy’s debut and most popular mixtape to date. This mixtape contains the smash hit single “1 Night”, and is credited to being the reason that people fell in love with Yatchy in the first place.

  2. His Debut album (which he dropped off last year) was a flop critically and financially. Yatchy even admitted verbally that it hit him right in his stomach and the L did get to him. So,that means his next project coming up should be to shut “All the haters” up.




For a lot of fans, Yatchy hasn’t been up to par with the quality of his music lately, and a sequel to this mixtape serves as hope that Lil boat returns to form.

 

After taking time to digest the project, the ultimate consensus is that Yatchy has improved upon his debut album, and he also does sound very much hungry, BUT he  still falls short in quality compared to his peers. That being said, the return to form is the most noticeable difference from his album. There is a good balance of bangers and ballads and the energy is youthful. That’s the reason I believe Yatchy’s career is flourishing the way it is: Because of his BRAND moreso than his music. Lil Yatchy is more than music. He’s created a brand, that’s a lifestyle. He calls himself the leader of the teens and it’s an accurate moniker. His brand consist of him just wanting to stay positive, have fun, and embrace being himself. A lot of people “go in “ on him, call him lame, say he can’t rap, etc…. However, I don’t think you can hate on a kid too much just tryna’ spread positive vibes and energy. He not out here feeding these kids poison like many people like to assume. Yatchy doesnt do or talk about doing crazy drugs. He may be profane with his lyrics and descriptions of his lifestyle, especially his interactions with women, but he actually isn’t too bad of a role model for the teens.

 

The thing that I can bring it down to is that, like the God Father of Internet Rap, “LIL B”, Lil Yatchy is “Based”. “Based” is all about being yourself and not caring about what people think. People can hate on Yatchy’s music as much as they want, not going to stop the fact that hes selling out shows all across the world. I have to say that his live shows look pretty lit too!

 All in all, there isnt too much deep to assess with "Lil Boat II". It's a yatchy tape where for what its worth, Yatchy does what he does best. Make fun and turnt up music for the youth. At 25 years old, though it may not always be my cup of tea, I do get it. I do get it.

 

Thanks for your time as always, peace and much love to all!

 

Lil Yatchy Online

 https://www.lilyachtystore.com
http://instagram.com/lilyachty
https://twitter.com/lilyachty

https://www.facebook.com/lilyachtysailingteam/

-Max Ataraxis

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