Legacy Track of the Week: J Cole - BRACKETS
“And the curriculum be tricking them, them dollars I spend, got us learning about the heroes with the whitest of skin, one thing about the men that's controlling the pen, that write history, they always seem to white-out they sins, maybe we'll never see a black man in the White House again, I'll write a check to the IRS, my pockets get slim, damn, do I even have a say bout where it's goin? Some older ***** told me to start voting, I said ‘Democracy is too fuckin' slow,’ if I'm giving y'all this hard-earned bread, I wanna know, better yet let me decide bitch it's 2018, let me pick the things I'm funding from an app on my screen” 💎💎💎 Tell me that isn’t the gospel and doesn’t make more sense every time you hear it smh 💎💎💎💎💎 those are crazy jewels and honestly the genius of J Cole might change the world in more ways than one. This record is complete with Richard Pryor excerpts and ‘Lil Cole’ interludes in addition to infectious melodies that compliment his flawless verses, this is my vote for the best record off Cole’s 5th studio album KOD.
J Cole - KOD
“How 'bout you just get the fuck off my dick? How 'bout you listen and never forget? Only gon'say this one time then I'll dip, ****** ain't worthy to be on my shit” The title track is Cole in straight Fire Squad mode, a firm reminder that no matter how much biased criticism you throw at him he’s still one of the three Kings of Hip Hop, and very arguably the sole possessor of the 👑. Speaking of which Cole in King OverDosed mode with all those sins and demons is most definitely a monster and a force to be reckoned with. This is in some ways one of the more superficial records on the album but also one of the most fun, and thanks to it’s tempo and overall precision it’s a nice tone setter for likely the best album of his career.
J Cole - Photograph
“All of a sudden you pop on my line, you could make time, stop on a dime, I think you mastered the art of sublime your type is harder to find, you could turn water to wine, yeah you could turn water to wine” Cole chronicles the intricacies of Computer Love both precisely and completely, as every subtle lyric lends itself to a vivid portrayal of what romance looks like in the 21st century. Then again maybe this is more about lust than love, and whom better than Cole to talk about the allures of temptation. Furthermore Cole always come correct with complete records with many layers, highlighted by not only potent verses but infectious hooks and bridges that enrapture your mind further with each listen. That “shoot your shot and it brick” refrain is one of the best in recent memory.
J Cole ft KiLL Edward - The Cut Off
“Yeah, I got some ****** that still owe me an apology, I'ma be the bigger man just like I always be, eventually but right now that's hard for me, I'm dreaming violent I can't tolerate disloyalty, so I'ma see you when I see you, know that day comin', I pray that on that day you slip and say something, I never fantasize bout murder cause I'm still sane, but I can't seem to fight this urge to make you feel pain, I know that vengeance is for Lord's and it's not for me, I know the punishment for you is that you not with me, you place your value on the bitches that you got with me, and now the bitches ask you daily ‘why you not with me?’, I had to cut some people off cause they was using me, my heart is big I want to give too much and usually, I send the bread and don't hear back for like two months now, you hit my phone, you need a loan, oh I'm a crutch now, I had to learn I never had shit, you never would split, you was hood rich, I couldn't get a dollar from you I remember that, it was blurry for a while but now it's coming back (coming back)” One of my favorite Cole verses ever and this one really hit home, I needed to hear this for all it’s accuracy, honesty, and poetry in its purest form. Cole really is the poet that the educators and scholars from yesterday don’t know about, yet for this art form he’s truly one of the most important voices of our time. And speaking of voices, if that KILL Edward on the hook sounds familiar it’s because that’s Cole taking his artistic license even further, altering the pitch of his voice to embody an alter-ego influenced by his real-life stepfather. Cole has often rapped about the disdain for his stepfather and the absence of his real father (although the two have seemed to mend their relationship in recent years), yet he’d never put a name on the former until now, and that revelation was only revealed when his brother Zach uncovered the truth in a spontaneous YouTube review. Those that have followed the music throughout the years know that all these people mentioned are incredibly significant, and it’s almost surreal to see Cole process those demons with such a grim pseudonym inspired by murder. Nonetheless this is not only a work of art but it’s a masterpiece, and that verse will continue to play in my head indefinitely.
J Cole - ATM
“I want it in physical, a million dollars I count up in intervals, without it I'm miserable, don't wanna fall off so I'm all in my bag, thanking God like it's biblical, I know it's gon solve every problem I have” As heard a million times already in all the NBA Playoffs promotion, this one right here is 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥 stupid fire and this one not only reminds me of Hollywood Cole but also the HeadBussa/ChrisTucker Cole where he is absolutely flexing all over this production provided by none other than himself! Forget what any of these copy-and-pasted critics say J Cole is not only a legend for producing his own music, but quietly kept he’s also one of the most talented and refined producers in the genre period. And once again he provides more layers in his writing than most, with a hook and a bridge that easily makes this one of the best commercial records of the year. And as for the video?!?!?! Stupid 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥 likely the best visuals in-house director Scott Lazer has ever brought to the screen.
J Cole - Motiv8
“I can't have no sympathy for fuck ******, all this shit I've seen done made my blood thicker, spill promethazine inside a double cup, double up my cream, now that's a Double Stuff, yeah, please don't hit my phone if it ain't bout no commas, keep the peace like Dalai Lama, big body Hummers, backin’ out the parking spot and though the law be on him, he exempt, Shawn Kemp, he keep that .40 on him, Go!” Smh 8 bars and it’s light and it’s still way more sicker than your average while all over his own production… which once again is perhaps the most understated and misrepresented quality of Cole’s appeal… nonetheless this is definitely Hollywood Cole at his finest, and honestly that second verse almost reminds me of Dedication Wayne… no exaggeration or hyperbole, Cole and those Green Day references has a handle on his delivery as good as Steph Curry in the Finals.
J Cole - Kevin’s Heart
“All a ***** know is how to fuck a good thing up, run from the pain, sip lean, smoke tree up 😈😈😈 💎💎💎 Monkey on my back and I walk a hundred miles, guilt make a ***** feel fake when he smile, love get confused in the mind of a child, cause love wouldn't lie like I lie and it's wild 😈😈😈 💎💎💎 Wanna have my cake and another cake too, even if the baker don't bake like you, even when the flavor don't taste like you, so I'm back mobbing with the late night crew 😈😈🔥🔥🔥💔” Born Sinner bars at their finest and Cole even gets Kevin Hart for the always on time creative visuals, but please don’t think this is their first collaboration, as let’s never forget when Kevin threw Jermaine the oop at the Celebrity All Star Game 🙌 🏀. S/o to T-Minus on the production, the only instrumental on the album not provided by J Cole himself.
J Cole - Window Pain (Outro)
“The results are deadly, because that child will suffer and that's what can most affect me, the little girl I met this past summer said ‘don't forget me,’ I won't forget you, how could I with all you went through? A bullet hit your cousin in temple while he was with you, and while you was talking I was tearin' up where's the tissue? If you was my sister then I would kiss you, and tell you that I'm sorry for the pain you had to live through, I know I'm blessed because your stress is realer than anything I done been through” 🙏 A classic Cole outro complete with a crazy instrumental (prepare for the drums), a fuck-up-your-rewind-button verse, and even one of his patented soulful hooks that have stayed with him since the start of his career. With that said Jermaine Cole has come a long way, and as said before this 5th album might be his best work to date.
J Cole - 1985 (Intro to The Fall Off)
“****** acting woke but they broke umm, I respect the struggle but you are frontin these days, man they barely old enough to drive, to tell them what they should do,who the fuck am I? I heard one of em diss me I'm surprised, I ain't trippin listen good to my reply” The nicest and coldest diss record you’ve heard in awhile, Cole smokes these mumble rappers all the while taking them to schools they clearly never attended, where all jokes aside Cole’s legendary status in the game makes him more significant than a thousand young emcees with internet clout thrown together. However, Cole is more shrewd than most and would never come off as a hater, where after having YG on the FHD tour he’s now welcoming Young Thug on the KOD tour, which by itself effectively made about a million Twitter A&R profiles obsolete. Here he goes changing the narrative once again, and now a decade in there hasn’t been one real contender that's ever tried Cole and for good reason… believe me they want no smoke...
Slum Village ft Q Tip - Hold Tight Remix
“D'Angelo play your piano, Jay Dee flip another beat for me, hold tight with Baatin and my ***** T3, Busta Bus, watch out for who you trust, Ali Shaheed, it's your blood that I bleed, yes, Phife, for you I will give my life, it's The Ummah shit for real till there's no more light” A remix to one of the best records off Fantastic Journey Vol 2., that Q Tip verse today you can feel in your soul.
Slum VIllage - Dilla Freestyle
“See it ain’t you, you ain’t down with the SV crew” RIP Jay Dee aka J Dilla one of the best producers who also had skills on the mic.
Slum Village ft Kurupt - Talk About The Hoes
“I’m where the bad bitches be, you know me, K-U-R-U-P-T I’m OG, straight from the DP, so let’s smash” 😂😂😂 This unreleased Kurupt verse is one of the best moments off Slum Village’s latest release The Lost Scrolls, Vol. 2.
Damian Marley ft Stephen Marley, Wiz Khalifa & Ty Dolla $ign - Medication (Remix)
“Medication - your medication makes me high, just be patient - I'm like a patient trying to find, levitation - run your fingers down my spine, elevation - your medication makes me high” Ty Dolla & Wiz Khalifa lend their verses for the remix to one off the highlights off Damian Marley’s Stony Hill released last year.
John Legend ft BloodPop® - A Good Night
“But everything's gonna be alright, I think I just met my wife (yeah, I said it), I know it's gonna be a good night, I think I just met my wife” John Legend is back with a pretty surefire type of heater right on time for the Spring and the Summer, where this is Get Lifted quality and that’s high praise for those that know better. Meanwhile Kansas producer/songwriter Bloodpop®
assists on the record and his contributions seem to have been significant, where overall this was a nice surprise and I’ll be looking forward to the next album.
Ariana Grande - No Tears Left To Cry
"I just want you to come with me, we on another mentality, ain't got no tears left to cry..." A nice record for Ariana Grande who continues to grow as an artist and I’m here for every minute and every visual 🔥🔥🔥 this one directed by the legendary Dave Meyers is nothing less than cinematic.