Lil Wayne has been in the game for almost two decades now and continues to prove that he is still one of the best lyricists in rap as well as all time. A lot of fans and listeners would write Wayne off at this point due to his lack of consistency. But what fans and other critiques may fail to realize is when you have two world famous and successful artist in a Nicki Minaj and a Drake on top of your own personal accomplishments, you really don't have anything else to prove. It would seem like your game plan would be to just go out there and have fun.
In the last recent years, Wayne has been more of a lyrical jokester than the usual story teller. He focuses more on punchlines than the actual substance of the song; which wouldn't be a good reason to immediately write him off.
In today's rap game, rappers tend to focus more on the hook than the substance of the song. The average song that you will here in a party or at a club doesn't contain too much lyrical content most of the time. This new scheme takes away the storytelling element of the song more times than less.
Now, Sorry 4 the Wait 2 didn't necessarily contain the lyrical Wayne that we all know and love either, but I can't say I was as disappointed in the tape as most listeners. While I'll agree that this wasn't nearly Wayne's finest work, I however saw some potential and hope for the future. The tape consisted of a few good songs that reminded me of a more in tune - Tune.
Despite the constant shots being thrown at Birdman and the rest of Cash Money, "CoCo" was an overall above average remix. Lines like "I told myself to save yourself cause I can't save you," is very clever when you consider the different meanings for the word "save".
"Hollyweezy" and "Preach" feat. 2 Chainz took me back to a Drought 3 - Dedication - No Ceilings Wayne. What really stood out in Hollyweezy was the fact that he managed to successfully fit the words "monitor" and "thermometer" in the same line and made it flow perfectly with the rhythm of the beat. Then at the end of the song he shows why he is considered the William Shakespeare of rap with impressive analogy and simile work as he raps "One to the chest with the chopper leave you with just arms and a head like an octopus."
Wayne not only shows songs of life in his recent projects, but he does the same in Big Sean's song, "Deep" from Dark Sky Paradise. It seems like he may be in the midst of finding himself -- or maybe even recreating himself since his recent break up with his label Cash Money.
This gift of independence may have been what Wayne needed to get himself together and go back to his old ways; some fresh air always does some good.
Given, from the collection of loose songs that have never made an album, Wayne hasn't shown any new signs of slowing down. "Krazy", "Grinding" and "Believe" me show more of the lyrical Wayne that supplies stories alongside the hard punchlines. "Krazy" was more of a "6 foot, 7 foot" type of song but was thoroughly supported with its visual. "Grindin'" and "Believe Me" on the other hand came with more substance. Maybe it had something to do with the Drake feature, subconsciously raising the bar; but it really doesn't matter because at the end of the day, competition makes the athlete.
Speaking of features that unknowingly raise competition, Young Tune also displayed lyrical genius in Nicki Minaj's single "Only", which also featured Drake and Chris Brown. Nicki and Drake were more on the bright side of the song, Chris Brown complemented the hook, and Wayne came in and delivered a more intriguing flow.
Wayne started by giving off the same impression that Nicki and Drake previously rapped in their verses but then almost immediately switched the topic a couple of bars later. Only Wayne could change the whole subject of a song and still keep our attention (while remembering quotable lyrics).
Wayne hasn't released an up to date album in the last two years, which means it's ultimately unfair and irrational to determine his state based on loose songs and features. There can be no full awareness of his music ability until the release of his overdue album, Tha Carter V. Wayne has always taken pride in his premiere projects more than a Sorry for the Wait or some random feature.
So, the idea of Wayne falling off as an artist is most definitely classified as a strong opinion more than it is a solid fact. Instead of criticizing him for being "under the weather" in the rap game recently, I feel Lil Wayne fans should be more concerned with when or even if the album is even going to be released.