What can be said about Lil Wayne in his musical transformation; you take a rapper "ternt" rock star, give him a guitar and he really starts to believe he can live up to the title. The Grammy award winning artist has brought us some lyrical works of genius and he is the mastermind behind the leaks. Despite leaking all over the internet hes sold an outrageous number of units with his previous albums, most notably the one million-in-one week of Tha Carter III. Who wouldn't feel invincible after that?
Rebirth is truly a guilty pleasure. We have the good, the bad, and the inaudible. His first cut, "American Star" fits somewhere in the middle of the spectrum. It suits well as a rock star anthem. The production really starts the album off right with it's weighty bass and and energy that should have energized the whole album. Other notable tracks include "Da Da Da," "On Fire," and "Knockout" which all possess a fair balance of rock influenced music, but not offensive to his core base.
Wayne clearly proves himself capable. Of course, he isn't the first artist to venture on to another genres, but he does it well when hes doing it well. However, there are some sobering efforts on Rebirth. In "Ground Zero," the verses are decently presented, but the hook leads to disappointment. "Let's Jump out of a window, let's jump off a building baby..." Waynes rapping style over the dark wail of guitars makes the song out to be nearly psychotic. "Get a Life" is one of the worst songs on the album, the overall mechanics of the song are terrible, and Wayne's voice is all over the place. "The Price is Wrong," doesn't hold much promise either, as the vocals and frentic music itself sound awkward coming from the former rapper.
Despite a few less favored selections, the album does find redemption. Featuring Eminem, "Drop The World" is the highlight of the album, and by far one of the best records.Wayne's auto-tuneless lyricism does the track justice, and it's dark and poetic tone are a lovely combination. In "Runnin," Young Money's Shanell get's a chance to showcase her talent, and Weezy takes a break from his roaring lyrics to spit some lines. This song carries an emotional undertone, but it's another top pick nonetheless.
As he states very well in "Ground Zero," Weezy doesn't even know what cloud he's on, and by the sound of some his albums cuts, who knows. While Rebirth isn't another Carter classic, it allowed Wayne to step outside the box, and display diversity in his music. While this rock album may be a Rebirth to Wayne, it is a fairly painful birth to his hardcore Hip-Hop fans. Perhaps, the resurrection lies in Tha Carter 4, which is the reportedly next move for Weezy.
Time will reveal.
LiL Wayne - "Runnin" (ft. Shanel)
LiL Wayne -"Drop The World" (ft. Eminem)
LiL Wayne - "Ground Zero"