Wednesday, September 28, 2011

J. Cole - Cole World: The Sideline Story (The Penn Review)

I wasn't going to review this album because I feel as though I am jaded being a J. Cole fan so that may obscure my ability to be objective. After sitting with the album a week I can say there are things that I don't like about the album. The things that I dont like are not very many and are a far and few between.

Dollar and a Dream III set the tone for the album. I love when Cole spits them heartfelt raps that I can personally relate to. I was feeling "Can't Get Enough" although when I first heard it, I didn't really think that was Trey Songz on the hook because he came with a different sound that we are used to from him. I do feel that this was a blatant attempt at a radio single that may have originally took Cole out of his element but I think he pulled it off well. "Sideline Story" put me in the mindset of something I would ride to or skip depending on my mood that day. "Mr. Nice Watch" was just 'OK' to me. I definitely liked Cole's verses better than Jay-Z's effort. "Cole World" is one of my favorite joints on the album and has one of my favorite lines on the album. "Got a 150 bitches in the club starring at me, how that feel... VERY HAPPY" I LOVE THAT LINE! We've all heard "In the Morning" and "Lights Please" so I wont comment on those. "Lost Ones" had a good message but I skip it. One of my homegirls suggested that he should have had a girl rap the 2nd verse to convey the female point of view. "Nobody's Perfect" was my other favorite joint on the album. I loved his flow on the first verse and Missy put me in the mindset of Aaliyah on the hook (I think Cole was going for that cuz he loves Aaliyah like I do). "Never Told" was cool at best. I liked his flow but the song got boring after a while. "Rise and Shine" was classic Cole and it's dope... PERIOD! I don't dislike "God's Gift" but I dont like it either. It's just in the middle of the road for me. "Breakdown" and "Work Out" could have been left off of the album completely for my taste. These 2 songs brought the overall project down to me.

Overall, I loved the album and I suggest that music listeners in search of some good hip hop PURCHASE this album! Again, I will openly acknowledge that I'm a Cole fan so his music hits me differently than other stuff that I listen to so with that in mind... I rate Cole's debut album 4 out of 5.

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