Before I start this let me say I hate Rick Ross. I am serious, I think the guy is lame and that he is just another "image" creation by the machine who doesn't have much merit when it comes musically. I know I'm a special sort, who actually wants to hear something different from an artist by the time the third album comes around, sue me. However I am forced to give Ross some credit for what he has put forth on this album "Deeper than Rap."
What Ross doesn't lack is excellent production and a damn good flow over the beats that he chooses. His flow is much better than let's say a Jadakiss and he even speeds it up on occasion showing he actually tries something when it comes to rap which is always a good thing.
When it comes down to subject matter, Ross has one, being rich from Coke. He handles that with verve. Ross does weave believable descriptions of the kingpin lifestyle with an extensive list of different ways to ball or stunt outrageously. Need examples? "Mafia Music" and "Maybach Music pt 2" open up the album on that note, with the latter featuring Kanye- who as usual tries too hard to fit in with the thugs, T-Pain's obligatory appearance, as well as Lil' Wayne (who mentions he is sitting in the asshole of the Maybach, wtf is up with that?). This theme continues with "Rich off Cocaine" (so creative), and "Gunplay". Ross mixes greasy talk with the luxury lifestyle in most of his songs.
The second variety of song Ross has is the Kingpin Sugar Daddy role that he is trying to fill since Biggie and Pun aren't around anymore. For this he enlists everyone from John Legend on the second single "Magnificent", Robin Thick eand The Dream, in what makes even more awkward pairings than the John Legend appearance, and of course Ne-yo. If you heard one you have heard them all.
As far as other rappers, Nas continues his southern defjam starring tour on "Usual Suspects" which overall is one of the better tracks on the entire album. Trina shows up for the lame sexual record "Face" and Foxy Brown makes an appearance on "Murder Mami" which is one of my least favorite songs on the album as it seems to encompass what I don't like about Ross with the worst of what Foxy Boogie is capable of.
Now I seem negative but oh well. I prefaced this by saying I'm not feeling Ross. If you check my earlier blog posts you will see where I say how an album title needs to relate to the music that makes up said album and Ross doesn't come through on his promise to show that it is "Deeper Than Rap". There is plenty of chance to dedicate some songs to his motivation to selling crack and to speak his story but Ross chooses to simply paint the life of a drug dealer in glamorous Miami Vice terms. I can't stand it but overall the album is a decent listen if you are into that type of thing.