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Strategically featuring rhymes on many well-known beats, the mixtape is already made superficially likable because of the popularity associated with original tracks such as 2Chainz’ “No Lie” and G.O.O.D Music’s “Mercy”. Although Wayne has his share of input, the songs stand on one leg, sounding great mostly because of rhythm and delivery rather than actual content. Weezy committed a rap faux pas by consistently adhering to the boundaries of the original rendition’s rhyme scheme and verse structure. Those similarities provide a nice, familiar nod, but when overdone become a restricting guideline for the work rather than the subtle, tongue-in-cheek allusions that they’re supposed to be.
Moments of shine exist, but are rare. It seems as if fans who listen faithfully could identify with kids in the projects who wait tirelessly for the ice cream truck to come by; days are great when they come but, otherwise, everything’s just alright. The less-than-impressive rhymes do not bother me as I had expected – I thought that was a good thing, until I realized that I might instead be desensitized to the mediocrity many expect from him.
If anything, Wayne pushes the boundaries of repetition, making it a point to incorporate mentions of wet genitalia and hallucinogenic drugs, as well as ad pitches for his new Macy’s clothing brand Trukfit, in almost every song. Although his drug choices and business ventures have changed, Wayne predictably exhausts his simple formula and essentially raps about the same thing he has been for years. The most memorable highlight doesn’t even belong to him, having been stolen by Nicki Minaj – the top emcee’s West Indian accent introduces an outspoken, and boastful, piece in which swift delivery and crafty puns bomb the competition to pieces.
Many of Wayne’s lines beg the question: Is he trying, or just cruising? Is Weezy being challenged, or did he just lose his touch? The Dedication 4 mixtape is definitely one to get crazy to, but if you’re looking for greater complexity in rhymes and higher-quality punchlines, it might be best to sit this one out.
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