Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Album Review: Reclassified by Iggy Azalea

Explicit Language

I have to admit that Iggy Azalea makes me realize just how out of touch I have become with pop culture.  I've heard her name a lot, new she was dating Nick Young, but had never heard  her music until I put on this album.

My first reaction was that it sounded a lot like a modern take on Missy Elliott.  Turns out Iggy Azalea was a big Missy Elliott fan, so probably got that one right.  The second thing that struck me was her voice.  It didn't seem to really fit the picture of the person on her album cover.  Got to looking into this and found that she hales from Australia, speaks with an Australian accent, but in fact she raps with a style that is based on the Southern rap that so heavily influenced her when she came to the states at the age of 16.  In essence she is a white Australian who sounds like an African American Southerner when she's rapping.  Very very odd.

The truth is we have a lot of artist today who are taking on character rolls with their pop persona and so maybe that's what Iggy Azalea is, just a character.  Maybe she genuinely finds that this voice best expresses how she feels.  But mostly I think of this line from the latest J. Cole album 2014 Forest Hills Drive,

History repeats itself and that's just how it goes
 Same way that these rappers always bite each others flows
 Same thing that my nigga Elvis did with Rock n Roll
 Justin Timberlake, Eminem, and then Macklemore
 While silly niggas argue over who gone snatch the crown
 Look around my nigga white people have snatched the sound
 This year I'll prolly go to the awards dappered down
 Watch Iggy win a Grammy as I try to crack a smile

There is something about this album that feels unauthentic.  I'm not sure in 1992 an artist like Iggy Azalea could have existed.  I'm not sure if Iggy Azalea had moved from Los Angeles to Miami and became this artist she could have been accepted, but in some odd way she has become a hot rap artist.

I must admit I was glad once I started looking around to find that I'm not the only one confounded by her.  There are some who outright call her a racist for imitating a certain sound, there are others, like J. Cole who defend her in the press.

All of that being said this is supposed to be an album review not a social commentary and so let me just say it ain't all that.  There is no flow to this album, the lyrics aren't very interesting.  So as a music album I'm not all that impressed.  As a an album to represent where we are today with race and gender and everything else.  Well it's still not all that interesting, but I believe that is what makes this album unique for most people.

Following the Rhapsody rating method I give the album 1 out of 5 stars for Just OK.

1 comment:

  1. None of the youth-group kids at the Super Bowl party knew who Missy Elliott was.

    I've heard bits of this "Fancy" song on commercials, so I'm pleased to report that I'm more in touch than you are.