Both female rappers have definitely held a important position in Hip-hop and in 2018 we see Cardi B release her first album which definitely took the internet with household names such as Diddy, Snoop and Missy giving it props. Just two days after in swoops Nicki with an old school mixtape type feel releasing two songs Chun Li and Barbie Tingz. You would expect by now that Hip-Hop artists especially females would have some sort of solidarity between each other and that was the case until it was announced that the two had a issue. Nicki did an interview in which she talked about Cardi not showing her enough respect when originally doing a song together.
Now let’s actually take a look at the music. With Cardi’s fiery yet playful character she has captured the hearts of many and as a result thousands have bought into the rappers personality. While it is not my place, nor my intention to take anything away from the rappers achievements it does prompt the question as to whether we as consumers have shifted the focus of the music industry too far away from the music itself. Food for thought.
Since we are here to talk about the music, let’s discuss a few of the stand out tracks from the album .
The song offered a chilled hip hop vibe, which made for a nice change on the trap-centric album. This commercial flavour will not only be ideal for the summer but showed Cardi to be somewhat versatile. With that being said it was evident that this was not Cardi’s element, highlighted by her playing it very safe with her flow. She most likely would have gotten away with this if Chance was not featured on the song. He not only brought the spice to the song that kept it engaging, but outperformed her with his flow too. The song was enjoyable nonetheless and with UK weather predicted to be in double digits I have no doubts, it will appear in many a snapchat story.
I Like It
If you appreciate genre fusion and the art of production, this is the track for you. The Latin infused number likely to be an ode to the rappers Dominican heritage is a combination of Salsa, hip hop and trap sounds. The mixing of genres presumably represents the merging of both her past and her present. I appreciated this song purely for its creativity and the way it highlighted Cardi’s willingness to push boundaries. This is something I hope to see more of on the rappers future projects.
Considering the evident difference in styles between these two artists, I was conceivably apprehensive when I saw Kehlani on the track list. To my surprise this ended being one of my favourite songs on the album purely because of Cardi’s unexpected Vulnerability. This track offered a small peek behind the curtain of the rappers soul, giving the audience a genuine moment of connection with the artist. Kehlani was vocally flawless as was to be expected, but it was Cardi’s sincerity that stole the show.
So where does that leave this album?
I cannot fault Cardi’s work or charisma as it is abundantly clear that the rapper makes great music. However I cannot help but feel that this album was missing a certain level of cohesion. To me it felt more like a compilation of singles rather than a complete project. While I appreciated the variety I feel as though the album would have benefited from a few clear interludes or transitional tracks, particularly between the high energy trap songs and pop numbers.
Regardless of my issues with the project it had a number of great tracks and I anticipate that I will continue to do well in the charts.
Now I could just leave the review here, but where’s the fun in that?
Enter Nicki Minaj.
Like clockwork the rapper returned after what seemed like an enternity just in time to perhaps steal Cardi’s Thunder. While I am a profound believer that nothing, happens by chance I will leave that down to your individual discretion. What I will say is that the rapper most definitely came back with a bang with the hashtag #NickiDay trending on Twitter worldwide.
Minaj treated fans, with not one but two brand new flame filled singles entitled ‘Barbie Tingz’ and ‘Chun-Li’
. The former showcased the artistic flare we’ve all grown to love, while the latter wowed with word play and of course the accents made an appearance. Pushing the sob stories and drama to the side, Minaj lyrically danced circles around Cardi like the veteran we all know her to be.
While I was by no means a fan of either of the tracks, Minaj’s lyrical prowess and seasoned ability to perform is undeniable.
In the wake of her album announcement, the gloves are certainly off when it comes to the music. A little healthy competition is a good thing, especially in the rap world. Something tells me we are in for an exciting ride.
The rumbles within the realms of social media seem to suggest that there can only be one queen of hip hop.
The question that now remains is who will it be?