“WORST…”: Drake’s Views is Not Such a Good Look

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Around the time 5AM in Toronto hit Soundcloud, the world was introduced to an unusual side of Drake. He was tougher, more confident, more aware of his stardom, and less focused on singing. Ever since that release, he repped this new image for so long–throughout NWTS, and other loosies–that ‘R&B Drake’ became a distant memory. With Views, Drake returns to his roots — be it the singing, or his hometown.

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EP Spotlight: Trapo – The Black Beverly Hills

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Release Date: November 11th, 2015

Number of songs: 9

“We hit licks and we do not get caught. I do it for my momma, though” raps Trapo in the intro of his debut EP: The Black Beverly Hills. A bold insight that can only originate from a place where being kind is not a survival skill. His deep voice often shifts to softer tones, as if it’s revealing the various perspectives that dabble—and fight for dominance—in his mind. Whereas on Cards & Conversation, (this EP’s standout) he says “I can’t love you right now, I’m too focused.” A statement that comes alive when you give TBBH a full listen. His singing doesn’t sound forced, and his rapping consists of vibrant lyrical accents that mean just enough to evoke scintillating emotion. As he shares his life with the listener, Trapo skillfully colors his grey world. All these talents combined—flavored with a certain amount of rawness to his songwriting/recording process—you have a rapper that can rank higher than many household names. The Black Beverly Hills is unvarnished, cohesive, and feels like a narrative. Keeping that in mind, his purest wish (“I just wanna change mommy” CTBTS) doesn’t seem that far-fetched. After all, what’s more promising than a talented seventeen year old who is aware of his reality, rapping his way out the slums.

A Star In The Making: Jayaire Woods Lets The Music Speak

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Jayaire is an up and coming rapper from Woodside, Illionis. On the internet he’s been given the epithet of a vocalist, but he’s much more than just that. Jayaire is an ambitious young dude who is fed up with being broke, and reaching for wealth, since staying afloat is never enough for him. He’s a “semi-alcoholic” who doesn’t let alcohol or any other intoxicant distract him from his mission, that is honing his craft. Like most of us, he deals with different relationships. Be it women, family members, or hood dudes with motives of doing harm to him & his friends. Heck, sometimes I feel like I know Jayaire Woods personally. Read more

Something’s Not Right: Travi$ Scott’s Rodeo Review

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Travi$ Scott has an innovative vision he simply can’t execute right. Days Before Rodeo—a melodic fusion of genres—favored by the majority for its brashness and experimental sound, was the cornerstone of what many had been expecting from Travi$ sonically. However, the true beauty of DBR stood behind it defying the archetypal song-making rules whilst remaining pleasant. With that project, Travi$ ensured his position as a nonconformist. A year later, Rodeo arrives and it sounds as if it’s worth more of a listen only at times it’s close to Days Before Rodeo.

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Beach Is Better: Future’s DS2 Review

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Drugs, women & money cover the surface of Future’s wholehearted, profound DS2. The emotion behind [seemingly superficial] lyrics make the album highly valuable, rather than just an ordinary trap album. Lines about codeine and/or fucking groupies are only a veil to the rap elitists that are afraid of taking popular music seriously. DS2 is a corybantic celebration combined with atoms of pure sincerity. A bulk of the album is filled with bliss, but in reality DS2 originates from sorrow. It presents an opportunity to gape at Future’s candid mindset, and life. Something Honest failed at doing.

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A Special Week: Reviewing Last Week’s Albums

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Last week was a wild one.

It’s July, and album releases are in full effect. There’s a new LP dropping every week. However, the past week offered ten times as much of what we usually receive. So, with a lot of material around—that, if you could OD on music, you would—we decided to highlight four more important albums. Read more

Summer’s Here: A$AP Rocky’s A.L.L.A Review

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A$AP Rocky’s sophomore album—At.Long.Last.A$AP—is the equivalent of a rainy, summer day. There’s been a lot of impediments during the making of the album, especially with the passing of A$AP founder/Rocky’s best friend, A$AP Yams; but even that hasn’t stopped the Harlem rapper from delivering the best work possible.

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Universal, Not Racial: Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly Review

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Welcome to Kendrick Lamar’s latest album, To Pimp A Butterfly.
An installment living in a world of its own—with heavy jazz-influenced, live instrumentation—where a black man deals with love, depression, grief and the curses of fame. Somehow, to some listeners—out of everything this project contains—there is nothing more interesting than the fact Kendrick Lamar is an African-American who tackles topics pertaining to his skin color throughout a few songs. Making it seem as if TPAB is a black-themed effort.
(Somebody even wrote a piece on how to “approach the overwhelming blackness” of it. Pathetic, right?) Read more

Big Sean, The Superhero: Dark Sky Paradise Album Review

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Imagine Big Sean as a superhero. One that has faced failure on all his past clashes, leaving him incapacitated to the point where he’d been mistaken for departed. However, he has now revived himself. An unforeseen release of IDFWU initiated Sean’s first steps as he embarks on another journey, with hopes of reaching the indefinite victory he’s been seeking for years. People notice him moving again; all eyes on Sean. He’s wearing a BAPE shirt, and sweatpants of the same brand. They have a music-playing device stitched to them.

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