Review : Lupe Fiasco - The Cool
EwLast year, Lupe Fiasco set himself apart from the rap pack with a debut full of brainy, Kanye-style positivity, including a laid-back skateboarding anthem, ''Kick, Push.'' You might wonder what happened to that guy if you've read how his follow-up, The Cool, is a concept album about gangsta life. But in truth, only four songs address that story line — thankfully leaving the bulk of this CD to instead indulge in Fiasco's divergent themes and musical explorations....full text
AvclubLast year's massively buzzed-about Lupe Fiasco's Food & Liquor was supposed to make its creator the thinking man's rap superstar: Think Kanye West before money and fame drove him insane or a Jay-Z more interested in robots, anime, and the Koran than conspicuous consumption. But rampant leaks and a mediocre Neptunes-produced single ("I Gotcha") conspired to kill Fiasco's platinum aspirations with a bracing dose of commercial reality. Instead of backing down or retrenching, Fiasco simply dreams a bigger dream on The Cool. He conceived The Cool as a concept album about the eternal pull of the streets, but the exceedingly abstract concept is perhaps most useful for the way it crystallizes Fiasco's longstanding interest in the morality of hip-hop and the corrupt secular world it reflects and distorts in ever-shifting funhouse mirrors....full text
NytimesSomber string sections and minor keys signal the unabashed seriousness of Lupe Fiasco’s second album, “The Cool.” Wasalu Muhammad Jaco, who calls himself Lupe Fiasco, is concerned about everything from the state of hip-hop to impending apocalypse in songs that envision a widening spiral of poverty, selfishness and disregard for consequences. Like “Lupe Fiasco’s Food & Liquor,” his first album, “The Cool” moves from the personal and the local to the all-encompassing. But this time around Lupe Fiasco and his producers — mostly Soundtrakk — have clarified the lyrics and brought out the hooks. The result is a three-act allegory that’s also one of the year’s best hip-hop albums....full text
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Do you think money can buy happiness?