More About Nothing by Wale
I have mixed feelings about Wale, especially since his signing to major label (blech). Luckily, he demonstrated that he was interested in saying something a few years ago.
More About Nothing is the continuation of a concept by Wale that's based on the sitcom Seinfeld. Almost every track is named for an episode from the show, and each usually features a quote or snippet from the show that has something to do with the rhymes to follow.
Here are the standouts:
Off the bat, is an in-your-face banger called "The Problem." To sum it up, the rap game is sick with empty rhymes and passionless MC's. Yep, that's about right.
Track three - "The Soup." Favorite track on the album. One of the most creatively-written "can we please elevate the rap game?!" rhymes I've heard.
Following "The Soup," is "The Breeze" and then "The Friends and Strangers." "The Breeze" - West coast sound from a DC MC. Not a huge fan of this one. It's a little crude and braggadocious for me. "Friends" is better. Check it:
I keep my friends close, enemies on a leash like,
Me and my haters is literally Siamese
I can define me but if I let my friends do it
They'll tell you I'm some bipolar, hard drug user.
The J gets smaller, I'm up in my zone
Though surrounded by an entourage, I feel like I'm alone
A long way from normal, I try to keep it cordial
I made some new friends, meet recorder and touring.
"The Eyes of the Tiger" is another interesting one. So check it. The intro is the voicemail Tiger Woods left his um, dessert, after their scandalousness was discovered by his wife. The rest of the track goes on to emulate Tiger's experiences with regards to his family, career, and the media. An interesting venture. Touché Wale. Touché.
"The Black N Gold" and "The Flight" are two other standouts. The former, a club-ready, feel-good number and the latter, a seemingly awful song, but upon closer examination, there are some subtle, deeper things going on that only multiple listenings will reveal.
As far as mixtapes go, well, they're hit or miss. Super easy to produce, and it follows that they're very easy to fill with crap until an artist's next official release drops. Thankfully, the About Nothing series from Wale is actually pretty good. He's obviously a little immature, but the fact that he's not telling me how to do some FOTW dance or how rich he is goes a long way.