Rick Ross: Album review richer than I’ve ever been

Opera music

Fifteen years after the start of his career, Rick Ross has carved out a space for himself in rap where he seems comfortable without being complacent. The beats of Rozay’s mean song are pleasantly predictable: hints of a drug trafficking past at odds with his history as a correctional officer, the occasional stories of rags to riches, and descriptions of designer loungewear. and cannabis strains that would make Wiz Khalifa blush, all set to beats as luxurious and elegant as bespoke suits or as sweaty and bouncy as the clubs in his hometown of Miami. Her gruff voice lends theatricality to her music, making even her most emotionally detached songs like opera-ready tales. He’s certainly the only rapper who can count Jazmine Sullivan and former Cocaine Cowboy Willie Falcon as guests on the album, as he does on his eleventh project, Richer than I have ever been.

Ross is still as capable and self-aware as ever, serving familiar storylines with a zeal largely absent from that of 2019. Port of Miami 2. Richer shows little of the thoracic bravado of Teflon Don or the settling of accounts of rap insiders Rather you than me. There is no event song or hidden opponent to put a more precise point on Ross’s progress since his last album or his latest book; all we get is progress, themed music to stimulate and motivate. That way the album is Ross’ standard fare – the genre he’s released since 2014. Billionaire hood– with a softer bite. He always brings you into his world, but the view is more refined, mahogany woodwork and cigars in armchairs instead of bottle service.

Although Ross’s voice is a powerful instrument, his performance is often more malleable than one might think. The pomp of his music may mask the left turns evident in his tales: Take the second verse of “The Pulitzer,” which begins with a funny throwaway line (“They say the floor is facetious / Fat boy just keep filling in the bleachers “), then delves into tales of friends serving prison terms and his own habit of self-healing with Percocet before ending up in the same money pit the song began in (” Gettin ‘money, it’s still Boobie gang / No colors, no flags, just let the bang tool “). Ross can go from a smirk at the thought of owning 100 cars on” Rapper Estates “to the hushed delivery of” Marathon ” , where he raps, “I had to learn on my own first, then I started teaching wealth / I’m no longer looking for shelter,” as a patient in therapy after a critical breakthrough. He rarely has it. look like reading a list of achievements from a teleprompter, even when it is correct nt what he does.

The feeling of familiarity throughout Richer guarantees that no song is bad, but there are also fewer standouts. It’s not autopilot, but we’ve seen these locales before. Fortunately, the production and the guests keep things pretty lively. Producer Bink! features a minimalist mid-tempo shaker on “Warm Words in a Cold World,” which teases Future’s most springy guest verse since Young Thug’s “Sup Mate”. The reworking of Timbaland’s lamentations on “The Pulitzer” – and the bouncy drums of Lyle Leduff and Don Cannon on “Wiggle” – put some strategic pep into the album stage. The rest of the energy for the project comes from Ross’s new eye for emerging talent, with verses from DreamDoll (“Wiggle”), Yungeen Ace (“Can’t Be Broke”) and Blxst (“Made It Out Alive” ) emphasizing the building of the legacy in his words.

Much of Ross’s appeal is how he makes his luxurious lifestyle accessible. He’s already proven that it doesn’t matter whether he lived the stories he told or not; he perfected the art of selling Rick Ross like only the world’s most renowned Wingstop franchisee could. Richer than I’ve ever been is far from Ross’s most important album, but few rappers can make you feel like you’re right next to him, living the story brick by brick.

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