J. Cole impresses with the same “Ville Mentality”
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Cole released his fourth studio album on Dec. 9, “4 Your Eyez Only.” After Cole’s release of “2014 Forest Hills Drive,” music fans have been highly anticipating any new releases from Cole. Through his relatable lyrics, Cole successfully incites conversations discussing life in general as well as personal experiences.
Cole has been described as one of the most captivating artists in the industry due to his impressive lyricism and passionate topics. The track “4 Your Eyez Only” contains words of true feeling and emotion specifically directed towards his daughter and the effects of negative environmental factors.
Cole redirected his style, but never lost sight of his ingenious way of conveying stories. Through four studio albums, Cole has provided his audience with insight into his personal life as well as the issues that surround us on a daily basis.
In comparison to his 3 other albums, this album has a more somber mood, addressing more serious topics in all of his songs. Cole addresses widely-discussed topics such as love and social injustice while also exploring controversial issues such as “The War on Drugs.”
“Neighbors,” the seventh track on his album, directly addresses the topic of “The War on Drugs” as a tool for discrimination and profiling, as well as the needed assistance to destroy detrimental stereotypes from individuals in power.
Songs like “Immortal” have lines that require insight but make for powerful lyrics nonetheless. “At the bottom and hanged, the strangest fruit you ever seen” alludes to the song “Strange Fruit” originally sung by Billie Holiday, which discusses the lynching of African Americans. Cole compares these former struggles to the burdens that continue to exist for people of color.
“Change” is my favorite song on the album. The smooth beat created by piano chords accompanied by bass guitar creates and audibly pleasing experience. This song encompasses all of Cole’s multiple talents. Cole plays the bass as well as contributes to the immaculate lyrics that amplify the merit of the song.
Cole has managed to switch up his style, but not stray away from the tone that has furnished the strong following that has pushed him to platinum albums and singles. Cole has established himself as a notable lyricist and continuing down this path will lead to legendary status.