I didn’t think we’d end up reviewing this one since it’s not technically Hip-Hop; Plus most of you have had this album for the past couple of months anyway (Shout out to Amazon!). But we all love Weezy over here, so we figured why not. Lil’ Wayne has been pulling out the guitar like crazy right around the time C3 came out; now he’s here to prove that he can actually play it. Well, kind of. Most of the instrumentals on the album come from other producers with Weezy playing on a few songs. Let’s see if Rebirth was really worth waiting for.
American Star Featuring Shanell; Produced by DJ Infamous
Lil’ Wayne jumps on an epic guitar intro, Auto-Tuning as usual. I don’t know how I feel about this one: Part of me thinks he’d sound a lot better if he left the Auto-Tune alone and actually tried to sing a little bit. The Auto-Tune/guitar combo doesn’t really work too well to me. Shanell makes the hook really hot (“Dope-boy with a guitar!”) and the track works very well, courtesy of DJ Infamous. The track kind of falters towards the end where Weezy pretty much loses control and starts yelling with the Auto-Tune. Overall, OK song.
Prom Queen Featuring Shanell, Produced by DJ Infamous & Drew Correa
This was the first single off the album. This was the song that had even King Jerm questioning what the fuck Weezy was thinking. It must have aged well, because I kind of dig it now. I said KIND OF. Tt still has some of the stupidest lines I have ever heard (“I love her fancy underwear…”), but overall I think it’s an OK song. This is an example of a song where Auto-Tune actually works with rock, which makes it a notable song on the album.
Ground Zero Produced by Patrick Stump
This is one of those songs that I really wanted to like, but it got good way too late into the song. The lyrics don’t mean much until the end of the song; Where society is going and how it seems like we’ve reached ground zero. It sounds really good, except for the hook which sounds like it was thrown together at the very last minute. Other than that, another OK song; nothing too notable.
Da Da Da Produced by Cool & Dre
I gotta give Weezy props on this one; he did it here. The first of the song had me scratching my head, mainly because he cranked the Auto-Tune up so damn much I couldn’t hear anything he was saying. The hook seems lazy at first, but it gets to be catchy when combined with yet another flawless Cool and Dre production. Check for Weezy’s last verse on the song and you can’t tell me you can’t wait for C4. Plus, he actually plays an instrument on this song: the bass, which has its own solo in this song. First song off the album I co-sign fully.
Paradice Produced by Kevin Rudolf
Kevin Rudolf of “Let it Rock” fame made the beat behind this one. I like the message of this one (Live your life, the price of fame, etc.). Still, can’t get behind this musically. SKIP!
Get A Life Produced by Tha Bizness
This sounds like Jonas Brothers…I’m not lying. Well, Jonas Brothers with f-bombs. I feel like they locked Weezy in a room full of syrup, weed, and various other drugs with Auto-Tune, and this song came out of it. SKIP!!
On Fire Produced by Cool & Dre
Alright, I’m not gonna lie and say this song isn’t hot when it is. Cool & Dre production on this one sounds right at home. Wayne sounds a lot better on this track just straight up spittin’ rather than the auto-tune tracks he was trying to put together previously. Also gotta give Weezy props for the guitar solo at the end of the song, despite the fact that it was 2, maybe 3 chords at most. I’m surprised this didn’t make more of a splash on the Hot 100. Good track.
Drop The World Featuring Eminem; Produced by Hit-Boy & Chase N. Cashe
I don’t think I have to say much here. Only thing I wish is that he would’ve saved this track for Tha Carter 4. The obvious stand-out track from the album, nothing else on here compares. Eminem blazes his 16 on this one:
“I came up from behind and pretty much snuck up
And butt fucked this game up
Better be careful when you bring my name up
Fuck this fame, that ain’t what/I came to claim
But the game ain’t gonna be the same on the day that I leave it
But I swear one way or another I’m a make these fuckin’ haters believe it”
This will be in my Top 5 songs of 2010, believe that.
Runnin’ Featuring Shanell; Produced by J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League
This another song I really liked off this album. It proves that Weezy needs to leave the singing to singers and just keep on rapping. Shanell does an excellent job with the hook on this song, providing some much needed emotion that was lacking on a couple of the previous tracks. J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League is great here and gives something Weezy can actually flow pretty well over.
One Way Trip Featuring Kevin Rudolf; Produced by Travis Barker
Travis Barker brought the drums with him on this one and Kevin Rudolf with the guitar definitely completed the song. The drums allow Weezy to let loose lyrically and let Rudolf take care of the chorus, which makes the song one of the highlights of the album. It sounds like at the point in the album Weezy realized he’s a better rapper than he is a guitarist.
Knockout Featuring Nicki Minaj; Produced by J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League
Another great 90’s sounding guitar riff courtesy of J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League. Nicki Minaj isn’t as much singing as she is talking, but her voice sounds nice over the slower riff the song goes into for the hook. She also gets to spit a little bit with the Auto-Tune, which sounds lil’ fucked up, but it goes with the whole punk-rock thing that the song’s got going on. This sounds really similar to Jonas Brothers/Nickelodeon but it works here for some reason. Good song.
The Price is Wrong Produced by Chase N. Cashe
Yeah, I’m not feeling this one at all…SKIP!!
Let’s be honest with ourselves: While some of us can applaud Lil’ Wayne for trying something a little different, I don’t think any of us can say that this was a good album. I’m probably only going to keep about 3 or 4 of these tracks on my PSP. I feel like if Weezy had dropped this album riding off the buzz of Tha Carter 3, this would have been a huge success, good music or not. But it’s on track to only sell 150K it’s first week, a far cry from “A Milli”. Because this album came out almost 2 years after C3, your fans are gonna expect a real album, not an experiment gone wrong. I just hope that after this Weezy drops the guitar for good and continues to show us why he’s known as one of the best rappers alive.
nappyPicks: “Drop the World”, “Knockout”, “Da Da Da”, “One Way Trip”