Review : Rick Ross - Ashes to Ashes
PitchforkChances are Rick Ross and Barry White never met. But in a lot of ways, the two are kindred spirits. As two big dudes with booming voices and theatrical appetites, Ross and White have both taken what should've been limited styles and managed to transcend anyway, just by pushing those styles way beyond excess. White could make arenas ooze just by bellowing the word "love" over and over; Ross can emulsify car speakers just by roaring about all the drugs he's almost certainly never sold. And on "Even Deeper", a track from his new Ashes to Ashes mixtape, Ross sounds almost as comfortable on the smooth orchestral funk ripples of "I'm Gonna Love You Just a Little More Baby" as White once did, with White's disembodied voice showing up to egg him on.
Ashes to Ashes comes on the heels of last year's Teflon Don album, the moment when Ross pushed his own zero-subtlety bark to insane levels of charismatic absurdity. Beyond the singles, Ross albums used to be grim trudges, but Teflon Don just about burst with indulgent decadence, Ross sharing million-dollar tracks with A-list guests and slurping up every minute of it. And it also had the identity-bending anthem "B.M.F. (Blowin' Money Fast)", rap's song of the summer. Ashes to Ashes is a free mixtape dashed off on Christmas Eve, in anticipation of yet another new album that's supposedly lurking just around the corner, and it's no surprise that nothing on it reaches the facepunch immediacy of "B.M.F." or the chiffon luxury of "Maybach Music III". But for a dashed-off mixtape, the scope remains pretty epic.
Ashes to Ashes has famous guests (T.I., Ludacris) and big producers (Boi-1da, Lex Luger), and its sonic depth and serious mastering job are enough to push it way beyond most mixtapes. But the mixtape's best moments come directly from Ross himself. Here, he continues to conjure hilariously larger-than-life ways to let you know he's spending more money than you are: "I'm still ballin' like I'm Bo Diddley! I park the Caddy in the living room!" On "Retrosuperfuture", he claims to be "skateboarding aboard the Pan American," and the image of Ross skateboarding anywhere, for any reason, is pretty amazing. Even Ross' dumbest moments are fun. On "John Doe", he says he's "jumping niggas like a chess piece," and unless he's talking about the knight, I'm pretty sure he's thinking of checkers. And on the chorus of the very first song, he rhymes "cell phone" with "iPhone"; he's almost certainly the only big rapper currently working who could get away with that....full text
24hourhiphopKeeping the "Good Music" coming Ross decided to drop a mixtape on Christmas and deliver the streets with a gift of his own powered by Maybach Music Group. Collaboration like "9 Piece" Ft. T.I. and "Black Mans Dream" Ft. Ludacris sits off "Ashes To Ashes" in the direction with lines from Ross like "Born in the Ghetto/Ferrari born in Italy"! Then they are song like "Even Deeper" and "RetroSuperFuture" Ft. Wiz Khalifa that smooth out the project and adds a more soulful feel to it. But it's personal favorites like "Play Your Part" Ft. Wale & Meek Mill that has the internet buzzing about the collaboration and the fact that both artist might join Maybach Music Group as well. Other key records to keep on repeat are "Ashes To Ashes" Ft KC and "She Crazy" Ft. Ne-Yo....full text
MostlyjunkfoodUNGH. Rozay unleashed this via Twitter a few minutes ago. Some bangers on this one. Features include T.I., Wiz Khalifa, Ludacris, Wale (who’s rumored to have signed to Maybach Music Group) and posthumous appearances from Barry White and Aaliyah via samples. Despite a highly forgettable Chester French appearance, I’m really diggin this tape. Production is dope throughout & bars are on point. Merry Christmas Eve from Santa’s favorite fellow big man, Rozay! UNGH....full text
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