At midnight, February 5th, 2016, Pittsburgh native rapper Wiz Khalifa added another masterpiece in his collection. This 13 song collection that he put together in, “Khalifa,” shows once again that Wiz is planning on staying authentic and is going back to what made him one of the most respected hip-hop icons in the game.
As expected, with this album Khalifa didn’t shy away from any, “stoner,” references. But, what you also get from this album is substantial quality, and motivational anthems as well. After listening to the album entirely, it was just one of those, “feel-good,” albums. An album that will provide you with a motivated frame of mind and helps you to the day with a positive attitude.
In the opening track, “BTS,” Khalifa address any and everyone who has doubted him throughout his journey to success, and how he rises above it all. There was no better way to start off this album. It is a song for anyone who can relate to being doubted and hated on by your peers; Khalifa provides the formula to overcome those obstacles.
The second track “Celebrate,” which features famous producer Rico Love, will instantly become one of the ultimate party anthem’s of the Spring. For this song, the production was perfected to a tee. Some might say that Khalifa’s raps are simple and he has no flow on this song, but it’s all part of his persona now. The importance of being able to connect with his fans means a lot to Khalifa and in my opinion he connected with everyone on this one.
“Elevate,” the third track on the album was simply meant to be in radio rotations. First listen; it brought me back to, “See You Again.” the only difference being that it’s a bit more confrontational and motivational than a song to honor someone. But, in terms of sound, it without a doubt took me there.
After the first few songs, Khalifa then changed up the vibes a little. Tracks 4-6 were all meant for the party crowd. “City View featuring Courtney Noelle,” “Cowboy,’ and “Bake Sale featuring Travis Scott,” all are songs that will receive some rotation in the club scenes and more than likely in someone’s car as they drive past on a Friday or Saturday night. The track, “City View,” contained some lyrics from a freestyle from Khalifa that he put out a year or two back. As expected, the genius of Khalifa couldn’t help but to mix it into a song.
This is where Khalifa’s soul comes in. In case you missed it, Khalifa said that when we listened to this album, we would all find out he has soul:
It isn’t very often when Khalifa decides to sing all the way throughout a song, but he provided that with, “Call Waiting.” It was a different sound for him, but simultaneously it had a smooth jazz feel to it. Which automatically makes it a track that could be played in a local bar/club or something of that nature. When it comes to being categorized as a hip-hop artist and as a rapper, it is important to remind the fans why you’re an artist. Khalifa did that with this track by showcasing his versatility and how all-around he is.
Taylor Gang was well represented throughout the album, but it was the final few tracks that were really for the Taylors. Adding labelmates J.R. Donato to the track, “Make A Play,” Ty Dolla $ign to, “Lit,” Chevy Woods to, “No Permission, and to finish off the masterpiece Juicy J too, “iSay.” Although, nobody was featured on, “Most Of Us,” it still definitely had that TGOD sound on it. All of these songs were basically anthems for Taylor Gang.
However, I decided to save the one song that caught my attention the most. The tenth song on the album, “Zoney,” touched everyone’s soul. It isn’t often when a music artist decides to put their children on a song, but Khalifa’s son Sebastian made a remarkable appearance on this song. Although, it was nothing more than a conversation between a father and son, it was still very touching and the track that will likely be the most talked about song from this album for that reason alone.
Overall, Khalifa is an absolute classic. As a fan myself, it was hard to envision the direction Khalifa was heading for this album after the recent release of, “Cabin Fever 3,” which wasn’t exactly a, “let down,” but there was a ton of features, which kind of ruined it for some of the fans.
Going back to the producers that he started with was a huge reason this album is and will be such a huge success. Time was definitely put in for this album and it showed after you listen to it entirely. Honestly, there isn’t one song on this album that I skipped when listening to it, but obviously that depends on the listener. In my opinion, with this album Khalifa showed us he is still versatile, he still has the flow, and he is here to stay.
There isn’t many artists that can connect with their fans better than Khalifa does. He is very aware with how well he connects with his fans and knows his impact on the game. Everyone has been complaining saying he, “needs to go back to the old Wiz.” Well, he did that with this album, while still connecting with his new fans. So, I believe everyone was satisfied with this album’s quality. What’s so appealing, is he still has to release, “Rolling Papers 2,” later on in the year. This could end up being a huge year for Khalifa.
W| By Dedrick Hendrix @dchendrix Via @InspireLSMusic