Not to start this review off on a negative note, but its high time Hip-Hop decided to move on without Andre 3000. Sure, we all want dude back, but every time we mention Big Boi, there has to be some mention of his eccentric rap partner. (See?) Well, it simply isnt fair, especially when it is Antwan André Patton who is putting out the hit music. His latest solo effort, Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty, is proof of his creative genius outside of the safety of the OutKast umbrella.
The effort General Patton put into Sir Lucious Left Foot is evident. Musically, he is in the same spirit as classic OutKast albums like Aquemini and he brings his cohorts along for the joyous ride. Co-stars include Yelawolf, The classic Dungeon Family, Janelle Monae, T.I. and B.o.B., funk god George Clinton, Gucci Mane, Jamie Foxx and Lil Jon, among several others.
The line-up never seems cluttered or forced though. In fact, all of the co-stars fit right in as if they were at home. Big Bois hospitality is genuine and it comes across first in the instrumentation on Sir Lucious Left Foot. The musicianship is second to none, which ranges from thick 70s funk (Fo Yo Sorrows with George Clinton) to frenetic bouncy beats (You Aint No DJ with Yelawolf and produced by Andre 3000) to more jazzy inflected pieces (Turns Me On with Joi and Sleepy Brown.).
The second part of Big Bois open invitation into his netherworld is a foray into his lyrics. By now, people know what to expect from him, yet he still crafts some of the most compelling and progressive rhymes on the market. Everybody that appears on somehow manages to find a comfortable place in Big Bois world, even Gucci Mane. Shine Blockas slows the beat down and lets Gucci Mane and Big Boi find a creative common ground.
Overall, the album oozes maturity, funk and a masterful orchestration that only an ATLien of Big Bois stature could pull off. But, hes got the good and he possesses the innovation to push the genre of Hip-Hop into its adulthood phase. The Train Pt. 2 (Sir Lucious Left Foot Saves The Day) isnt really a stand out song, but it is indicative why this album is great. The Organized Noize-produced song like others is an album cut that acts as the mortar to the bricks like the bubbly Shutterbug. But that is how the album works. It is comprised of stellar album cuts and they tag team with single worthy records, the cornerstone of commercial success.
And, the aforementioned Andre 3000 was prevented from being on the album from Jive Records, who is clearly trying to get a new OutKast album from the duo. Big Boi didnt even b***h or moan. He just leaked it and put out one of the year's best albums. The song wasnt even needed, but it was for those still clamoring for a reunion. They will soon find out that Sir Lucious Left Foot can stand on his own...foot.