Just Another Girl On The IRT

Freestyle musings from a pseudo-intellectual hellcat in high heels with Huxtable aspirations in a ghetto fab world. Proudly sponsored by bouts of bitchy mood swings, one too many swigs of Turning Leaf, the letters F & U and the madness that is the Rotten Apple.

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Work in progress. Neurotic. Daydream believer. Bookworm. Addicted to the arts. Stubborn. Spoiled rotten. Lefty in more ways than one. Pop culture whore. Equal opportunity hater. Kid at heart.

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Thursday, November 23, 2006

The ego has landed

I can and will knock the hustleI think it was that quintessential poet Kenny Rogers who offered us this nugget of wisdom: "you gotta know what to hold 'em...know when to fold 'em." Apparently, no one bothered to forward the memo to Shawn Carter. With no apologies to Juelz Santana, Jigga Man's M.O. was clearly billed as the real return to "what the game's been missing." The whispers of irrelevance towards hip-hop's birthplace stayed wafting in the air thicker than a cloud of hydro from a corner cipher. Round-the-way pretenders in Busta Rhymes, Fat Joe & Lloyd Banks have all tried and failed, dropping one commercial brick after another in rapid succession. With the city that never sleeps getting hit with the snooze button outside the tri-state area, New York rap music turns its eyes again this week to its Summer Jam savior to be a little less Bruce Wayne and more Caped Crusader for the sake of Gotham City's reputation. But when you hype your new album as the most anticipated career comeback since Lazarus was resurrected, you better back up your braggadocio with big beats and even bigger hooks. But the Danny Ocean of hip-hop is far more adept at goodbyes than hellos.

The self-proclaimed "Michael Jordan of recording" still malcontent with sitting on the sidelines fueled endless speculation on whether we'd see him wearing #23 or the #45. Fuck both analogies because the answer is neither. This is a free fall to the depths of Jordan's Birmingham Barons Triple-A tryouts. Rusty as hell, diminished skills, out of shape to compete and with a misplaced flow that now mimics Ben Stein. He could've chugged a few cans of Ensure, set aside his AARP newsletter and focused on hitting mics like Larry King, but instead he dropped the biggest turkey on the eve of Thanksgiving. With a wide open opportunity to put the Big Apple on his shoulders with an epic album, he dumbed down for the dickriders who'll throw up that idiotic pyramid without rationalization. Kinda like that lame kid you used to play with that would swear up and down they could fly. And after asking 'em to show and prove, the cornball's response is "I can, but I just don't want to right now..." Forget getting your grown man on, this is grandfather rap. Old man's taking it slow in the booth so he doesn't break a hip.


Death of a dynastyThe burning question is now he's settled into the cushy life of a middle aged mogul with a trophy ditz on his arm, can Hov rap about anything else? The Brooklyn street hustler angle is shopworn as are the incessant odes to the lifestyles of the nouveau riche and shameless. How many more times can he keep a straight face, rapping about trips to St. Tropez and his Stepford wife-to-be's "Birkin bags"? How about waxing poetic on his trip to Africa? This guy was probably recording poop platters like Anything or the cutting room B'Day reject, Hollywood in the middle of Angola. Nothing he saw there inspired him to write? Really? Apparently not. And if he did write about Africa, he'd just write about how many concert tix he sold and about how he fly he is for loungin' with Kofi Annan. He's too obsessed with himself to step outside his comfort zone to elevate his song craft above much else. When he's not going back to basics about his usual party & bullshit and tries to get "abstract," it just sounds like he's quoting fortune cookies. I suppose the fact that most verses aren't just 14 songs devoted to "moving weight in the 80's" is worthy of some commendation, but rap's elder statesman is clearly out of his element now. He's in Nas territory. Common territory. Lupe territory. Talib territory. And all of these lyricists do random but poignant observations on life far better than this, and for the most part, with better beats. It's never a good look when Coldplay's Chris Martin turns out the best track on your record, but that's exactly the case with Midlife Crisis... er, I mean, Kingdom Came And Went. After wondering aloud What More Can I Say?, Jay proves once and for all, yes, he really has nothing more to say except to state the fact that he's back ("What you want me to do? I'm sorry! I'm back.") So much for clever wordplay. I've got 99 problems and scrapping this disappointment for cab fare ain't one.

I can't believe Nas's joint got pushed back yet again for this fuckery. Cut the bullshit and retire already. And I mean fading to black for real this time, please.

Rating:


Download this: Beach Chair, Kingdom Come, Do U Wanna Ride


link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 6:43 PM |


4 Comments:
Anonymous nova commented at 11/29/2006 01:48:00 AM~  

Thank you for this post. I didn't even bother to write about this album. I'm more excited by the Clipse.

Blogger Berry commented at 11/29/2006 10:50:00 AM~  

Speaking of catching up. It is feast of famine with you. :-)

Blogger TriniPrincess commented at 11/30/2006 02:31:00 AM~  

nova, first things first...I adore your site. Been lurking there forever, but finally creeping out the woodworks now. And yes, the stench of wack juice is all over Hov's album. Star Trak brought serious heat for the Clipse. The label tug of war was worth the wait.

Berry, enjoy my zone outs for multiple postings while you can. LMAO

Anonymous Lae commented at 12/02/2006 11:20:00 PM~  

I couldn't have said it better myself...most of my friends were giving me heat for berating Jay's album and not buying into the monotony. You're such a good writer!!! But for real tho, did u have to blast my nigga Chris Martin? I heart Coldplay.

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