Guns cocked, shots fired, flames—enter Waka Flocka’s debut, Flockaveli. The 17-track album, which features cameos from Pastor Troy, Wale, and several other rappers, is one of the most anticipated albums of the year—in a good and bad way. Waka’s fans are overjoyed that his debut has finally arrived while his critics are happy to have more ammo to use against him, which Flocka gives way too easily on Flockaveli.
As a critic, it’s difficult to dissect this album track by track because they all sound the same. From the subject matter to the beats, this album is just one long song that doesn’t end soon enough. And nothing about these tracks make them distinctive or interesting. There are some moments where the beats give a slight head nod but they are far and few and you end up right back where you started.
In all fairness, most critics condemn Waka for his dreadful lyrics (for good reason,) but that doesn’t phase this writer. We know that he is not going to give us complex rhyme schemes or thought provoking lyrics and we do not expect him to. His subject matter is extremely basic and he lacks substance, which is prevalent throughout this album. Lyrics like, “Shout out to my grandma/for all them ass whoopins/ that shit made me tough/no more ass whoopins,” prove that he is as simple as it gets.
But Waka doesn’t even try to at least make the lyrics imaginative, enjoyable, or witty. He delivers his rhymes with no effort, he sounds bored, and just does not know what he is doing. Every rapper doesn’t need to be cerebral or use immaculate metaphors, but if they are going to take this approach, at least be good at it. And Waka Flocka is not good at it by any means.
Also, using the same producer can be hit or miss with any album but for Flocka, it is the latter. Lex Luger, who produced majority of this album, understands Waka incredibly well by providing him with highly decorated beats to make up for his lack of lyrical skill. Lex’s beats take the focus away from Flocka’s lyrics and causes the listener to concentrate on the production. But the problem is the beats on Flockaveli sound the same in their construction making this album drag.
On top of that, some of the production sounds like regurgitated renditions of beats that we have already heard. “Grove St. Party” featuring Kebo Gotti, “Bricksquad” featuring Gudda Gudda, and “Fuck This Club Up” featuring Pastor Troy and Slim Dunkin sound like bad rips off a formula that Lex’s peers used years ago. Lex should’ve added his own distinct element to these beats giving them a fresh energy opposed to a stale one that will ultimately piss your ears off.
It’s obvious that Waka Flocka makes his music for himself and his fans because neither is bothered by the lack of the three C’s: cohesiveness, creativity, or charisma. But Flocka’s admirers will be pleased with this album because he is giving them exactly what they expect from him: trap music drenched in braggadocios rhymes, gun talk, beef, partying, and women with beats that are heavy in synthesizers, hard hitting drums, and a good amount of bounce.
In the end, this album will garner an ample amount of radio airplay, get plenty of strippers more tips, and rattle tons of trunks across the country. So Waka won’t be too concerned with his naysayers who question his place in Hip Hop because his fans will stand by him and keep his flame lit while critics scratch their heads in dismay.
A HipHopSite.Com / The Well Versed Collaboration.
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