Ludacris – Battle Of The Sexes [Review]

I’m reaching back a bit and showing my age here but, “I remember when…” Luda was Chris Lova Lova on Hot 97.5 in Atlanta, and I’m not saying that from reading, I was in ATL then. I remember him announcing he was working on something with Timbo then he played it and wow. “Phat Rabbit” was comedy rap but it was evident that dude had talent. Here we are 12 years, 7 albums, and 11 platinum plaques since then, talking about his latest album.

Intro
Produced by Xcel
I’m typically over intros’ on albums. There was a time I liked to hear the artist set the table for the album but after everyone started doing it, and failing, I just got to a point where I’d rather them just get into the music. This intro however, I wished were longer. The beat is dope as hell and as an indication, this one is for the 12’s. Luda’s frenetic flow is at home over the Southern bounce of this Xcel beat. Not to mention that the call/response hook of “Now the ladies, they aite but they ain’t hittin’ on nothin’ do my fellas run this muthafucka ( helllll yeaaaaaa)/Now the fellas, they aite but they ain’t hittin’ on nothin’ do my ladies run this muthafucka (hellllll yeaaaaaa)” seems very appropriate based on the title.e.e.e.e.e.e.e.e..

How Low
Produced by T-Minus
The lead single off the album exploded onto the scene. He did this at the BET awards, and I remember being impressed by the song, his flow and stage presence on this one. This is def a club banger…strip or dance, take your pick, either club will do. Shout out to Body Tap, Strokers, Blue Flame, and of course, Magic City.

My Chick Bad
Featuring Nicki Minaj; Produced by The Legendary Traxster
Second single, and it appears we have a problem on our hands with this album. Not only has Luda set his sights on the club/strip scene HARD this time, he’s executing this with precision. The Legendary Traxster offers up simplistic head nod excellence on this track. I can hear ANYONE rapping on this beat easily. I do expect a few remixes of this track.

OK, I thought I’d pretend that I wasn’t going to mention my girl Minaj being on this song. Y’all know how I feel about her, so do I really need to say anything? OK, carry on.

Everybody Drunk
Featuring Lil’ Scrappy; Produced by DJ Montay
This song isn’t bad at all, a lot slower than the previous offerings and I think that is what turned me on it. We still get the southern bounce but it’s placed after two blazing songs and a incessant intro. It’s like trying to hit a John Tudor change-up after 3 straight Nolan Ryan fastballs. Still, I can see “Miracle” doing her thing to this one on stage.

I Do It All Night
Featuring Shawna; Produced by B Crucial & Tony Dinero
I’m not much up on the hip hop drama and backstory on a lot of things, but apparently, Shawna and Luda were going to do this entire album back and forth. Between then and now, she ended up “Disturbing the Peace” and leaving Disturbing the Peace. It’s a shame to, because her appearances on this album, starting with this song, are shining moments. To further cement the transition to slow songs after the heat of the first 3 songs, this one is offered up in the 5 slot. This is a pretty cool song, worth checkin’ out.

Sex Room
Featuring Trey Songz; Produced by Kajun
There are a few, very few, flat out sex raps that I like, so take my thoughts on this one with a grain of salt. It’s a cool sound and while there isn’t any beating around the bush on this one, no pun intended, this song is pretty elementary as far as lyrics and interest go. So, if you like overt slow sexual raps, this may be right over your alley.

I Know You Got A Man
Featuring Flo Rida; Produced by Infinity
I’m happy to hear the tempo pick back up with this song. I like the way Luda flows a little slower on this beat and changes his inflection for emphasis on his flow this time. What’s even more interesting than that is the fact that I don’t hate Flo Rida’s flow. Matter of fact, I REALLY like it. What in the hell…but yea, dude did a good job on this one. I would have liked to hear a chick flow in response to the fellas to complete the song rather than just being on the hook, but I can’t hate this song at all.

Hey Ho
Featuring Lil’ Kim & Lil’ Fate; Produced by Khao
Yes indeed, we have another club/strip club murderer on our hands. The hook may incite a riot and some spike in alcohol abuse and slapping incidences, but I’m sure there will be an dramatic increase to the number of women that dance and ignore the word “Ho” being chanted when this one comes on. Lil’ Kim goes hard for the ladies asserting that they cheat better than men, and she’s right. I could go without Fate’s verse and just got longer offerings from Kim and Luda though.

Party No Mo
Featuring Gucci Mane; Produced by Bangladesh
This beat is no “A Millie” by any means. In all seriousness, outside of the deep bass, I don’t like the track. The hook is terrible and it’s essentially a bland offering. Problem with that is that Luda really brought his A game lyrically on what is, essentially, a throw away song. He saved it from being a skip with lines like “Ya got mo’ dough, then homie ya gon hafta show me/You never say it rains like Tony Toni Tone/My Chevy’s outside and it’s sittin’ on Kobe’s/And I keep the hood with me like Obi OneKenobi”.

B.O.T.S. Radio
Featuring I-20 & Shawna; Produced by The Runners
I’ll let the cat out of the bag on this one right now, I-20 killed this song hands down. He went with straight bars, no metaphors or extra reliance on similes and wordplay, just flat out lyrics that work and flow. Luda and Shawna do good jobs, but he really set this song off. Musically, it just sounds like an extended intro or interlude that never really takes off. It goes with the concept of the song though so it works.

Can’t Live With You
Featuring Monica Produced by Khao
I have a feeling, that with Monica’s own project coming out, and the radio friendly vibe of this song, this will be the next single if there is a next single. There’s something off or flat about the hook on this one. Everything else is a nice song and is basically a blueprint of how to make a good song that is radio ready.

Feelin’ So Sexy
Featuring Shawna; Produced by Gaggie
We already discussed how I felt about overt sexual rap songs right? Ok…this is another. As you were.

Tell Me A Secret
Featuring Ne-Yo; Produced by Swizz Beatz
Um, a Swizz Beat? This song is damn near an R&B track. I’m impressed he can do something like this. Now unlike the previous songs sex raps on this album, I dig this one. The smooth laid back flow of Luda’s delivery, the beat, and Ne-Yo’s singing on the hook really make this a good song.

My Chick Bad (Remix)
Featuring Diamond, Trina and Eve; Produced by The Legendary Traxster
LADIES. Why you wait for Luda to coordinate this shit? The beat, as discussed, dopeness. The ladies flow and arrangement, insane. How is it that my flat out fave song on the album is the chicks version? I don’t know, but Diamond set it up nicely. Trina comes on and does Trina, you know what you’re getting here. Eve shocked me with not only her appearance on the album, but her verse. She finishes this one off nicely. Dope remix.

Sexting
Produced by The Neptunes
By definition, this is “Phat Rabbit 2010”. This song is a parody of Tiger going to sex rehab and the message he left one of them chicks about taking her name off her voicemail. Now, it doesn’t go along with the album sound like, at all. But it’s a really fun song and is a LOT more creative than the sound would make you think.

Bottom Line:
The title of the album is a bit misleading I think, but the fact that Luda features so many features on this album (15) and doesn’t lose in the expected quality of his music is a win. If you look at his record sales, he’s been fighting the battle against the download phenomenon as is languishing as everyone’s favorite underrated rapper. While his Conjure mixtape left a bad taste in our mouths, this album is definitely the right night cap for your evening. From the crib, to the club, the the car, the crib, it takes care of you quite nicely.

nappyPicks: Support the South’s secret weapon

Download: Ludacris – “Sexting”
Download: Ludacris feat. Diamond, Trina, & Eve – “My Chick Bad (remix)”
Download: Ludacris feat. Pitbull & Ciara – “How Low (remix)”

CLICK HERE
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