Review : T.I. - Paper Trail
RapreviewsThe hype leading into Clifford Harris' highly-anticipated "Paper Trail" has been hard to avoid. It's hard to say for certain if it's been overkill. On the one hand releasing SIX singles before your full-length album even hits stores is a potential album killer. It's hard to imagine fans who have already downloaded the best songs a la carte from "Paper Trail" suddenly wanting to reinvest and pay $15 to own them all again. On the other hand any album strong enough to have six singles before it even hits brick 'n mortar retail is probably going to be a certifiable banger start to finish. Fans who only bought one or two of these songs would definitely want to have the rest, especially since T.I. is one of the most popular rap artists to come out of Atlanta in the 21st century. ...full text
EwT.I.'s sixth CD Paper Trail is full of self-reflection laced with gangsta bravado. He's haunted by the shooting death of his best friend, concerned that he'll meet a similar fate, and uncertain about his future (which is likely to include a stint in prison for felony weapons charges). Despite his often earnest lyrics, the radio-friendly party anthems, flirty come-ons, collaborations with A-list pals (Rihanna, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Justin Timberlake), and outstanding production prove this beleaguered bad boy still knows how to have a good time....full text
BillboardIt's been a tumultuous year of offstage drama for T.I., but "Paper Trail" finds him back in the driver's seat. The MC reasserts his lyrical skills on tracks like "I'm Illy," clearly recorded during his house arrest stint on weapons charges, where he speaks frankly about his life. The Kanye West-produced "Swagger Like Us" featuring Jay-Z, West and Lil Wayne is a clear highlight, as is the Rihanna-led "Live Your Life." Despite appearances by Swizz Beatz, John Legend, Usher and Ludacris (surprising, considering their long rivalry), the focus remains squarely on T.I. throughout. When you've got a lot of distractions, especially looming prison time, it's not always the best muse....full text
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