And now for the moment you’ve all been waiting for: The review for the best boring rapper alive! While I have nothing against J. Cole (in fact, when I asked, I in form people that I’m a fan of his early work. Sighting projects like The Come Up, Friday Night Lights, and Sideline Story as notable), I believe that there are far too many better and more intriguing artists out today who grab my interest.
To the average consumer, who’s primary source for music is the radio and might occasionally find his or herself in a barbershop hip-hop discussion, J. Cole serves as the designated lyricist in a time where this style of rap may seem to be on the decline. However, you have to take into account where I come from. The rap that I fell in love with during my teen years (i.e Atmosphere, Murs, Brother Ali, early Kanye West) has been consious from the start. So I’m really not too blown away when I hear song after song about a guy loosing his virginity.
Although I will say this, 4 Your Eyez Only was exceptional. There were several tracks on here in which I did enjoy and find myself returning to listen to. Particularly “Deja Vu”, for it’s sample of “Swing My Way” by K.P. and Envyi (used by Bryson Tiller on “Exchange” and Charles Hamilton on his debut single “Brooklyn Girls”)
The following track “Ville Mentality”, amazing production with some smooth pianos, so I’d say this is my favorite song off the album. Throughout all of 4 Your Eyez Only, the production takes soft and beautiful turns with lots of strings, which is very soothing to the ears. Other noteworthy songs would have to be “Foldin Clothes” and the closing title track.
Outside of the wonderful production, 4 Your Eyez Only serves as an open letter from a character named James, who has died and leaves this tape to his daughter. As far as conceptual albums go, this is no To Pimp a Butterfly, however I am quite satisfied with J. Cole on this one. 4 Your Eyez Only opens up to 4/5 PALMs!