- 14 May 18
Impressive effort from rap superstar.
Where other rappers spit heedless bars about expensive jets, jewellery and such, Cole reflects on the flaws, and limits, of this thinking. The fact that this album is his third in a row without a single collaboration speaks volumes to his personal artistic attitude – he’s happiest when on the outside looking in.
Does this ever slide into preachy moralising? It might sound that way after a few listens, or when you catch snatches of lyrics out of context. But every piece of wisdom that Cole wants to impart seems entirely earned, in a way that it hasn’t been for other rappers. This becomes apparent in songs like ‘Motiv8’ where he begins: “I can’t have no sympathy for fuck niggas/ All the shit I’ve seen done made my blood thicker”. He’s not doing the things that his contemporaries are, and he’s all the better for it.