Birdman & Lil Wayne - Like Father, Like Son Review
by Patrick Muldowney
I'm so glad I'm not a Rap is crap cracker. Those who feel that way are completely missing out on the appeal, and the reason Rap sells so much better than Rock to America's youth. Rappers like Birdman & Lil Wayne do not market a collection of songs they wrote; they market a product complete with stories full of action and violence. They talk about problem-solving and surviving. They're strength and testosterone for insecure adolescent boys, and freedom and energy for maturing adolescent girls. While millions of us scurry home to watch numerous incarnations of "CSI", or become quick fans of "Criminal Minds", we could vilify violent and criminal rap lyrics, but it all seems hypocritical, and ignorant of the clear success. Like Father, Like Son is an example of one of these successful products. Intermixing skits directly influenced by The Godfather, Birdman & Lil Wayne rap about the life that America has glorified since its rugged inception: Individual success is the apex.
Other than perfectly acting in accordance to the formula, Like Father, Like Son is actually a disappointing album. Many tracks contain boring, repetitive beats that have too little bass and the generic overproduction of karaoke music. Birdman & Lil Wayne do little to save the 4-figure beats, content to lay back admiring their cash, because they are on vacation most of this disc. Lil Wayne showed much more energy, talent, and flow on early Juvenile albums than here. Surely this overall effort is not evidence he's improved with age. Consequently, this is not a Redman/Method Man duo that will flourish into media success beyond the Rap world. As a listener, at times you start looking ahead for the next skit because that is where the entertainment predominately lays.
Birdman & Lil Wayne's few shining moments occur during the first third of Like Father, Like Son. "Over Here Hustlin'" is the toughest track. Featuring a complex bass beat, and a dramatic mix of synthesized tracks, this fits into the tradition of Gangsta Rap. This is also Lil Wayne's finest contribution; he truly shows for a fleeting instance that he is one of the premiere Cash Money rappers. "Stuntin' Like My Daddy" is the song teenagers will blast. The repetitive chorus is catchy, and it's danceable. "1st Key", about drug running, would have been Eazy-E's favorite. It has the best beat, modernizing late 70s R&B, plus it is equipped with a great narrative about buying "my 1st key from my baby's momma's brother." Up until "Family Rules - Skit", Like Father, Like Son is a decent product, but listening beyond that is risky.
Sometimes Rap is crap, but what form of music is crap-free. Birdman & Lil Wayne could prove to be a formidable duo in the future, but, in its entirety, Like Father, Like Son is not Exhibit A for the Defense.
Tracks added to iPod: Loyalty - Skit, Over Here Hustlin', 1st Key, Out The Pound
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