It’s been a long time since you last heard from me. Blame that thing that Sam Cooke talked about and that thing they do in DC. But nonetheless here I am. Back with another First 48. We should all know the drill by now. If not see below. If you do let’s get to it.
“Ghost, what’s the First 48?”
The First 48 is simply the first 48 thoughts that come to mind when revisiting an album or listening to it for the first time. In this case, it’s the latter. Consider this not quite a full review but moreso a preview/quick summary piece. Just something light to give you an idea of whether or not you want to take that dive and give a project a chance.
What’s on deck? Why it’s the man who said #BaduBox was like going to another planet latest offering. That’s right, Common’s Nobody Smiling is on deck.
1) *looks at track list* 13 tracks this should be good.
2) If anything it’ll be short.
3) Features from the usual suspects, Malik Yusef, Cocaine 80s, Vince Staples and Big Sean.
4) Hopefully it lives up to it’s title.
5) Welp time to press play and see what we get.
6) Oh my these horns on “The Neighborhood” are greatness.
7) Didn’t take long for a shot at George Bush.
8) Oh please don’t be one of those albums with skits at the end of every track.
9) “No Fear” is nice.
10) “I’m hearing fucking voices like when porn play.” My nigga Common ladies and gents.
11) This Big Sean hook is catchy in a weird way.
12) Big Sean been killing guest verses lately. Remember that “Sanctified” verse?
13) The production on this is nice so far.
14) Jhene Aiko may be just bland and regular to most but she’s damn good at what she does.
15) Plus she’s damn good looking
16) “I’m giving you the Gladys Knight you’ve ever had.” Yup gonna use that.
17) Oh we got a Biggie sample on “Speak My Piece”
18) I don’t know why but I can see Common is his Kangol break dancing to this beat in the studio.
19) Don’t act like you can’t see him throwing down a piece of cardboard in the studio and having a moment.
20) The hooks on this have been great. Also Common hasn’t handled most of them.
21) Common got bodied by this chick on “Hustle Harder”.
22) These skits remind me of GKMC. Wasn’t a fan of those either.
23) Basically halfway thru and this might be Common hardest album in a while.
24) And there’s a Trayvon reference. Least when Common does it it appears sincere.
25) The title track especially the beat is hard as nails.
26) I need Pusha or The Unit over that beat.
27) Malik Yusef can talk that talk better than most.
28) “GOOD Music in the building. Yea we got ghost writers. They just actually ghosts.”
29) “Real” is a real change of pace. Definitely more like what you’d expect from a Common track.
30) Yea…. Not feeling “Kingdom”.
31) “Rewind That” is a dope look back at things. Feel like it should’ve closed the album tho.
32) It’s interesting anytime anybody close to Dilla opens up about their relationship with him.
33) “For what it’s worth I wanted him to have a Grammy before he left this earth.”
34) “Out On Bond” returns this album back to the aggressive sound.
35) “I ball bitches wanna palm me now.”. Don’t know why but I gotta use that line.
36) Vince Staples has delivered on both his guest spots. Especially this one.
37) And “7 Deadly Sins” keeps the aggressive theme going.
38) “Never seen a nigga make money while mad. So hustle plus wrath equals you do the math.”
39) “Young Hearts Run Free” does the same thing “Real” did.
40) That’s kill the flow and momentum of the previous tracks.
41) It’s a nice closer, just feel “Rewind That” would be better as a closer.
42) Overall one of Common’s better efforts. Especially lately.
43) Highlights: “Diamonds” “Speak My Piece” “Nobody’s Smiling”
44) Oh the production is definitely a highlight.
45) Low spots: The sequencing.
46) Oh and “Kingdom” too. Definitely not a highlight.
47) No ID deserves a Grammy for the production on this.
There we have it folks. My almighty return to Rhyme Junkie. Did you miss me? Also we got my First 48 thoughts on Common’s latest effort. Full review coming soon. Til then give the album a listen yourself.