Rapper Rick Ross’s highly anticipated fifth studio album, God Forgives, I Don’t, hit stores worldwide yesterday, ending the wait for what was predicted to be one of the hottest albums of the summer.
Ross’s consistent lyrical improvement with each album and tremendous work ethic have slowly elevated him to one of the biggest names in rap today.
His non-stop work schedule, combined with his formation of one of the strongest rosters of any rap label, has helped the Maybach Music Group CEO create a musical empire with endless potential.
“With all of his success, Ross is now ready to extract sweet revenge on his doubters,” wrote MTV’s Rob Markman.” It’ll take more than a corrections officer controversy, a pair of seizures or what seems to be an oversaturation of the rap market to stop the bawse, and God Forgives is the irrefutable evidence.”
One of the most notable constants in Ross’s music is the quality of the production and beat selection. Erika Ramirez of Billboard.com said, “Ross saves himself from redundancy with triumphant soundscapes, the majority of which are produced by long-time collaborators that guarantee a hit, J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League, and terse wordplay interwoven between the countless boastful rhymes.”
Markman echoed Ramirez’s sentiments in his article, saying, “Rozay’s rhymes are sharper than ever, but his strongest suit has always his impeccable beat selection. On ‘Ashamed,’ the former d-boy seems embarrassed by his former life as a drug dealer, but never apologizes over Cool & Dre’s fitting soul selection.”
Despite his great beat selections there are some who still question the validity of his rhymes. Rolling Stone critic Jonah Weiner wrote, “Over beats that alternate between sparkling, decadent string arrangements and assaultive, synthesized blare, Ross pretzels hip-hop’s familiar rags-to-riches arc into a Mobius strip, slaloming around an autobiographical timeline that may or may not be his own. One moment he’s enjoying ’20-stack seats at the Heat game’; the next he’s counting small-timer ‘brown-bag money.’ Here he’s in a Maybach; a few bars down he’s in a rental car. … Ross is a restless eccentric masquerading as a no-frills traditionalist, and his best boasts go overboard to the point of incoherence.” Weiner still gave the album 4 stars.
God Forgives, I Don’t is now available on iTunes and at retail stores worldwide.