Album Remarks & Appraisals:
EXPLICIT. 2010 release, a crossover Rock album from the self-proclaimed 'greatest rapper of all time'. Lil Wayne's previous full-length, the Grammy Award-winning The Carter III has been certified triple platinum with over one million sold in it's first week of release! Rebirth, his long rumored Rock album, is still Rap heavy and features guest appearances from Eminem, Shanell (AKA SNL), Kevin Rudolf, Nicki Minaj and others. Includes the first single 'Prom Queen'.
Rebirth is the seventh studio album by American rapper Lil Wayne, released February 2, 2010 on Cash Money Records. Originally set to be released in early 2009 before several delays, the album was produced primarily by Cool & Dre, DJ Infamous, DJ Nasty & LVM, Kevin Rudolf, and J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League. Rebirth was promoted as Wayne's rock music debut, though it includes some hip hop tracks.
The album debuted at number two on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart, selling 176,000 copies in its first week. It became Wayne's seventh top-ten album in the United States and produced four singles that attained Billboard chart success. Upon its release, Rebirth received generally negative reviews from most music critics. It has been certified gold in sales by the Recording Industry Association of America, with domestic shipment of 500,000 copies.
"Dwayne Carter, known to millions as Lil Wayne, has become something of a music industry mogul recently, signing the much-talked-about Nicki Minaj and Drake to his record label, Young Money. Ranked as one of the highest earning hip hop artists in 2009, it seemed like the cough syrup-supping star had finally arrived. But when time came to create his new album, Auto-Tune and rock riffs got the better of him, and not in a good way.
2008's Tha Carter III, released to widespread acclaim, set Carter's chosen moniker in stone as one of the best MCs heard in a very long time; it sold over a million copies in its first week. His flow was nothing short of amazing, and the production skills on show were of a comparable, complementary quality. But with Rebirth he has switched that successful formula, which catapulted him to A-list status, to one that presents him as a wannabe rock star. And one that nobody wants to hear at that.
American Star is an awful introduction, and sadly it sums up the overall sound of this album: a lot of guitars, drums and plenty of Auto-Tune usage. Guest vocals from Young Money-signed RnB chanteuse Shanell only contribute further to its downfall; she also features on the equally terrible second track, Prom Queen. Paradice, on the other hand, is a number that brings out the best in Lil Wayne: you get to hear his deep lyrics about coming from nowhere to becoming a worldwide star, and living in his own version of paradise. The track is carried by a soft drum beat, unlike much of the album, which is full of such noise that you can't hear a word he's trying to say.
Other standout tracks include On Fire, on which Carter samples Amy Holland's She's on Fire (from the Scarface soundtrack), and Drop the World, featuring Eminem. Which means that there are three tracks that make the grade - a poor return from a 14-track collection crafted by an artist who's not simply established, but a superstar in the right circles.
There's nothing wrong with experimentation, and a handful of rock tracks here could have worked well. But to make a whole album based around a sound Lil Wayne is so inexperienced with is simply outrageous." - BBC
"t has been nearly a year since "Prom Queen" was released as the first single from Lil Wayne's highly speculated rock album, a record which was later rumored to see release sometime in 2009. Since then, the album's release was confirmed and three other tracks from the record were officially released, however Rebirth's release was pushed back multiple times despite Wayne himself confirming that the record had been finished in August. While the album was again given a formal release date recently, this time set for February of 2010, coincidentally just days before Weezy's impending sentencing date stemming from a 2007 weapons possession charge, Rebirth was leaked by, of all places, Amazon.com (as some 500 copies were prematurely sent out to fans who had pre-ordered it). While the circumstances surrounding the leak are unfortunate, what's even more unfortunate is that with Rebirth actually hitting the streets, the highly talented, highly prolific, and highly acclaimed emcee has now officially released the worst album of his career.
Lil Wayne has never been one to shy away from the spotlight, or publicly express any sense of honest self-consciousness, but in Rebirth's lead track, "American Star," the emcee sets a precedent that eventually explains why the record never had a chance to begin with. "Listen to my own voice, in my black Rolls-Royce; get the girls of my choice to take off their shorts and blouses, I take of my trousers." Like the lyrics, Rebirth is - even compared to Weezy's other matierial - overindulgent, but more importantly, the album is entirely humorless; from the get-go Rebirth is simply a record where, whether purposefully or not, Weezy takes himself, and his craft far, far too seriously, and suffers greatly for it.
"Prom Queen," the DJ Infamous & Drew Correa-produced single that sparked discussion about the possibility of the album, drops as Rebirth's second track. While the initial shock of how pathetic it is as a stab at some sort of rock stardom has wore off (slightly) since is was released in January, the evidence remains that Weezy still lacks any sort of chops when stepping into the world of guitar-driven rock. "Ground Zero" follows as a unique hybrid, where Wayne fails to fully commit to either rapping or aggo-yelling; it's a tired comparison, but Weezy is honestly a backwards red NY Yankees ball-cap away from full on Limp Bizkitry here.
The only highlight on the record comes with Eminem's verse on "Drop The World." Unfortunately a minute of cohesion doesn't make up for an album's worth of poorly constructed confusion.
Rebirth eventually closes with two of its worst tracks, "Knockout" and "The Price is Wrong." If nothing else, "Knockout" stands as one of the best examples as to why vocoderized pop punk should not exist. "The Price is Wrong," however, has many more issues. The drop-tuned, overly aggressive power chords used in the track translate as so completely empty that they'd hardly cut it with the worst of the current batch of bands residing on pretty much any station still using "X-treme" in its tag line. The song thankfully fades away, but as it does so, it concludes with Weezy repeatedly barking, "Fuck her anyway;" which is ironic as the feeling which follows is "Fuck Wayne... anyway."
Rebirth is a stunningly sour example of why Lil Wayne should stick to what he's good at. He can seemingly lay down 100 bars at a moment's notice, and at this point in time it's almost guaranteed that at least a few of them are going to be smart, funny, and downright untouchable. But take the emcee outside of that realm and he's lostâEuro"put a guitar in his hand, and he becomes a lost fool. As an emcee, Wayne has produced a series of remarkably sharp studio recordings that has given credence to accusations that he's one of the best rappers alive. That being said, Lil Wayne has clearly smoked himself retarded as he believes that he is equally strong as a vocalist and musician, which clearly he is not. No further proof of this is needed other than a single listen to Rebirth." - CultureBully602527006338
Recording information: Effigy Studio's, Detroit, MI; Record Room Studios, Miami, FL; YM/CM Studio's, Miami, FL.
Photographer: Jonathan Mannion.
Featuring the single "Prom Queen" and released right after his hip-hop mixtape No Ceilings, Rebirth is Lil Wayne's rap-rock album. The rapper fronts a live a band on most cuts, with crunching guitars and thunderous drums supplying the heavy metal backbeat. Best of the bunch is the jittery "Get a Life," which finds the rapper riding the song's new wave-inspired beat as if his Cash Money label just signed Devo and couldn't be happier. ~ David Jeffries
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