Album Review- Killer Mike- Pledge

This is the album I have been looking forward to the most this year. Killer Mike, that Mike Bigga shit was short lived, has been one of those slept-on yet anticipated artists since he appeared on Outkast's "Whole Wide World" years ago and impressed most people with his street sensibility and ability to outside of the box at the same time. Throughout several independent releases and label strife he has maintained a loyal following and it culminates with his first official Grand Hustle Release, Pledge (with the backwards E).

Mike starts off his album string with production that on "So Glourious" that reflects his personality, with strength yet the soulful backdrop. He also expresses the things that make up his personality on this intro. "That's Life 2" is a political rap addressing the common ghetto concerns of politicians, shady preachers, and the public school system. While I won't pretend to agree with everything he says politically on this song, or the album for that matter, his assertions come across as more genuine than a Lupe Fiasco. The track also sounds like some of the classic Dungeon Family stuff and not necessarily like the current trends dominating southern hip-hop. "Ric Flair" is a change of pace in feel for Mike, as the song samples the infamous wrestler's speeches and uses it as a synonym for Mike's status in the street game.

"Burn" has a gospel rock feel as Killer Mike goes back in on his political rap as he threatens to "burn this motherfucker down", that of which he speaks I believe is the entire 'system' as it is. "God in the Building 2" builds on one of KM's mix tape tracks as he talks about how he is inspired and that the road to salvation isn't just through the church. The song talks a lot about hypocrisy in selling dope to survive. "American Dream" is more of a street politics song where he compares some famous drug dealers and the kennedies, Bush's, and Rothschilds.

"Everything" (Holding You Down) is the song for the good women out there and is rather run of the mill. "Follow Your Dreams" is a good idea but the flow doesn't really work, while "Swimming" channels the spirit of Sleepy Brown with a slightly awkward track that falls into the forgetful category. "Player's Lullaby" with Roc D the Legend, and Twista is set up just to showcase the Chi-town legend it seems because the other two artists fail to leave a positive mark.

Gucci Mane is the featured guest on "Animal" which I take it is an attempt to coin a new term akin to going 'H.A.M', while Killer Mike does good with the beat, which was obviously meant to showcase Gucci, it fails because the so icey man doesn't give anything worth remembering or laughing at. "Go Out on The town" featuring young Jeezy is a serious head nodder that is about nothing but bangs nonetheless. The only other song is the lead single "Ready,Set,Go" and the remix to that song which features T.I. on hook,ad-libs, and overdubs and Big Boi on the remix and Mike delivers several decent punchlines which are punctuated by those ad-libs.

Overall, I got exactly what I expected from Mike. The songs are all pretty solid for the most part with joints like Burn and Ready Set Go providing a solid foundation for the album. It is a definate listen to and wouldn't be a bad addition to the collection.

Rating : 3.5/5


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