Music

Review: Lil Wayne – “Tha Carter V”

After years of waiting and anticipation, Tha Carter V has finally arrived and I couldn’t be happier as a fan. With the last installment in the series, Wayne has given us real deep look into his mind. With this album, he talked about his thoughts on committing suicide and how he overcame so many of his demons to become what he is today.  Here are my thoughts on Tha Carter V and the future of Cash Money.

Wayne’s Mindset For Tha Carter V

Wayne originally intended CV to be his last album so he put a lot more thought into it. With CV, he wasn’t going to give you his typical boastful self. Instead, he wanted to be more transparent and share some of his most innermost thoughts. This was clear with the opening interlude and first track ‘Don’t Cry’ (feat. XXXTENTACION).  On the track Wayne talks of wanting his family to be well taken care of and if he ends up dying its most likely because of his addiction to lean. This track just sets the overall tone of the album.

Regardless of the album’s serious tone, Wayne still gives us a fun party track in “Uproar” produced by Swizz Beats. The track seems to be the album’s first single. Wayne even started an #uproarchallenge with his kids.

The Story Telling

The album’s most popular track at is “Mona Lisa” (featuring Kendrick Lamar). On this song, both Wayne and Kendrick showcase their storytelling abilities. This is a unique track because you can see how Wayne has influenced Kendrick’s style. It was a track where you can hear both student and teacher go at it on the same track. On ‘Mona Lisa’ the two tell two sides of a story about a woman who sets up her lover up to be robbed. Even though this song was recorded back around 2014 and Kendrick’s verse sounds dated, this track still holds its own among today’s music.

Is Tha Carter V dated??

Speaking of dated tracks, the biggest concern with the album’s release is whether or not the album would hold up to today’s music. The album was recorded around 2014 and was in legal limbo with Cash Money for almost five years. To make sure the album remained relevant in today’s market Wayne did change some verses to some original tracks on the original songs. He also had some of the producers update the sound on tracks they produced for the album.

“Let It All Work Out”, one of my favorite tracks on the album is an example of an updated track that was listed on a leaked 2014 track list that was updated. In his cover story for Billboard Magazine, it was revealed that Wayne had added new lyrics. In the new lyrics, he admitted that the shooting incident he had as a child was actually a suicide attempt.

Overall Tha Carter V was the perfect end to one of the greatest series in hip-hop. With Tha Carter V I feel like a lot of things listeners are missing if they aren’t listening closely. A lot of people’s first reaction wasn’t too positive for this album. Over time people would appreciate this album way more than they do now in my opinion.

If you want to learn more about the series check out my editorial The Rise of the Carter‘. 

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