Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Wiz Khalifa "Star Power" (2008)

In between Prince of the City Vol. 2 and Star Power Khalifa's weed consumption had to have gone up. The references are far more on par with what we have come to expect and the sound is that spacely party and chill vibe he has used his in house team of beatmakers to mold into their thing. Here we still see moments of that block talking young kid whose first project welcomed you to Pistolvania.

Most of these projects have utilized a quick intro and it remains the same here which just means the music starts that much sooner. Kicks off proper with a Johnny Juilano feature "I'm a Star" that is a filled with an awesome hook taylor made for clubs. Wiz spends the time telling you just how star lived his life is. Truth or fiction, it doesn't really matter he owns the image and paints it to be pretty fun.

Of course it can't all be fun and parties. The guests keep coming through which add another element to this tapes walking of a line between where Wiz came from and where he was going. Kev The Hustler, Boaz & Young Ro join him for the remix to "Be Easy" featuring the same, mashing, heavy synth, dirty banger of a beat but with all these cats going in and handleing theirs. Wiz gives us a new verse that is full of that bragadocious swagger I'm sure Warner Bros. was convinced they could capitolize on.

The Star Power tracklist is interspersed with "freestyles" over commerical beats. If these are real, straight up freestyles that is pretty awesome. We will probably never have a way to know and it's unfortunate that the state of the game today means that we question what someone means with the use of that word. In the end though, each of them ("Low Ridin", "Everytime", Dope Boys" & "Where The Cash At") show us that he is a fully capable emcee, ready to perform at the level of his peers. Fuck a freshman 10 cover in 2009, Wiz was the chosen one and hasn't ever lost sight of his vision.

This tape is fun and shows much of the potential we are seeing come to fruiton today. Perhaps I've been sayin this throughout my reviews of all these projects. It's an amazing feat to me in this industry today. Few people grasp the concept of building an artist. It was how the music industry operated for years. I'm enjoying his back catolog as an oppurtunity to see into the mind of an artist I thoroughly enjoy. It shows me who he was and who he really is more fully. And I constantly hear hints as to what he makes today. All of this contributes to my listening of his tunes.

Listening to Star Power I can't help but spark up. It's the first tape I've reviewed in this series that has given me that desire. As I said, his weed consumption has increased here. And his ear for beats demonstrates it. So many of these tracks just feel like they are covered in this haze, not the dustyness of so much boom bap production but the cloudy haze that comes from blunt after blunt after blunt to the dome. This is some new age stoner music for the masses.

Download Star Power here.

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