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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

DJ Khaled - Victory album review

So DJ Khaled is on his 4th album, “Victory”. Honestly, I don’t see why people didn’t think he would be successful, he gets popular rappers, puts them all together on posse cuts, with catchy hooks. He has shown through the years he has a consistent record of making hits, by staying to this formula. Unfortunately for Victory, its strength is it’s downfall. Not only does this album sound like every other Khaled album, structure wise, not execution wise (more on that later), but the songs sound pretty much the same on the album. Khaled albums are a whose who of Southern Hip Hop artists, but we know of his especially close connections with Rick Ross, Young Jeezy, Plies and T-Pain. That in mind, it’s no surprise they are all back (Rick Ross and Young Jeezy with multiple appearances). Honestly, I am surprised that there is no Fat Joe or Lil Wayne, because they’re usually around too. What is still around are those drowning synths present on every Khaled and Ross album, that usually sound triumphant, but more often on here sound overdone. However when they do have that triumphant feel, it definitely works. The lead single “Fed Up” features (of course) Rick Ross and Young Jeezy, but now Usher is thrown in the mix, along with everyone’s new “Last name Ever, First name Greatest” rapper, Drake. The beat works, Ross and Jeezy sound at their best, while Usher’s hook really is catchy, and like him or not, Lil Wayne Vanilla is pretty infectious. I am disappointed though, because what Khaled usually is good at is picking good combinations, which he still is, but they are not used as effectively as in the past. “Rockin’ All My Chains On” features Bun B, Birdman, and Soulja Boy, however Bun B is the one doing the hook, and all three have a verse. I would think Soulja Boy would have made the same hook twice as catchy, while Bun B could have taken either of the other verses. Also, “Ball” Features Schife (…me neither) on hook duty, while Jim Jones gets 3 verses on the same type of production. First, why does Jim Jones have 3 verses, he rarely does a whole 3 on his own best songs, and Khaled could have gave one of the few non-southern artists a non-southern sounding beat. These songs aren’t even the low points of the album, that’s just the trend. The bright spots though are when the sounds vary, like the when the pace is slowed down on the title track that features Nas and John Legend and a solo by Rum, over a dark, menacing production complaining about wanting real rap back. In all, Victory is more of the same, but watered down than the last 3 cds.

Listen To: “Fed Up”, “Victory”, and “Bringing Real Rap Back”
Avoid: “Ball”, “Bring The Money Out” and “Killing Me”