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Nas


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41 of 47 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "No matter what the CD called, I'm unbeatable y'all"
Legendary Queensbridge rapper Nas created a sizable buzz for his ninth studio album by planning a provocative title, finally deciding to leave the project untitled mere weeks before its release. However, the agenda and content remained, and the LP is equally ambitious even without the epithet. The record focuses on blackness in America.

Nas' winding career has...
Published on July 15, 2008 by ctrx

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Still nasty, but not always in the best way
Nas is just amazing when it comes to fitting so many syllables into every single line of his verses, but it is mostly for not on this new album. Unfortunately, the production on this album does not rise to the same level as Nas' lyrics, and the result is an album that lacks that lyrical/musical cohesion that really cemented the legacy of "Illmatic" and later Nas albums...
Published on October 9, 2008 by Derek Lipkin


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41 of 47 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "No matter what the CD called, I'm unbeatable y'all", July 15, 2008
By 
ctrx ('bout to show you how the EAST COAST rocks...) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
Legendary Queensbridge rapper Nas created a sizable buzz for his ninth studio album by planning a provocative title, finally deciding to leave the project untitled mere weeks before its release. However, the agenda and content remained, and the LP is equally ambitious even without the epithet. The record focuses on blackness in America.

Nas' winding career has taken him from a humble street observer to Puffy-era hustler to apocalyptic philosopher to ghetto savior to persecuted representative (and probably a few stops in between) since his 1994 debut Illmatic, frequently regarded as hip hop's greatest album. In recent years, his detractors have pointed to an oversized ego, overambitious concepts, and corniness as flaws to his music. Yet with each passing album, Nas continues to provide exactly what made him my favorite rapper before I had even hit puberty: mind-numbingly complex rhyme schemes, ingenious references and allusions that are probably lost on all but his most attentive listeners, beautifully poetic artistry, vivid imagery, impeccable delivery and style, and the inexplicably uplifting, inspirational quality he brings to any track. His latest effort is no exception.

Nas' buddy AZ is praised for the way he has updated his successful formula throughout his career on each album since his classic debut Doe or Die. Nas albums have no formula, and no two are conceptually similar. Of his discography, "Untitled" most resembles his two most recent efforts Street's Disciple and Hip Hop Is Dead structurally. Unlike its predecessors, it remains focused and true to the concept throughout the tracklist. In a decade where terrorism has snatched America's collective attention after the race-fueled 1990s, Nas finds his subject matter timely as the country's first black president has become a real possibility. He explores the nation's perceptions of the African-American existence and how they have changed over time, dating back to slavery, and looks forward. The most effective tracks use rich metaphor and allusion as well as musical elements giving nods to the blaxploitation era to create an effect that, at its best, really sounds like the musical embodiment of blackness.

"Untitled" does not have any anthems or instant jaw-droppers as his past efforts have, but these are not without tradeoffs (this is Nas after all). Overall the album is a cohesive and effective effort. Production is tastefully polished with a mature, cutting-edge, and even majestic sound and guests are impressive. "Breathe" is a refreshing track anchored by soulful horns and punctuated by Nas' enthusiastic performance. "Make the World Go Round" with the Game and Chris Brown and "America" feel a bit too familiar, but the rich Polow da Don-produced single "Hero" and rock-tinged "Sly Fox" are strong, the latter dripping with angry paranoia and lyrical gems. Nas and Busta Rhymes rip the clever "Fried Chicken," and "We're Not Alone" is excellent, an eerily prophetic profile with smooth soul from guest singer Mykel. I like the production on "Y'all My Ns," and the closer "Black President" is a well-constructed ode to Barack Obama.

"Untitled" is not perfect, and undoubtedly his critics will fault it as they have every album since his debut because it is not Illmatic. But as Nas does not strive to recreate that album, he continues his constant creative progression with an interesting conceptual effort that sounds great. Whether or not one sympathizes or agrees with his sentiments, listening to Nas argue his plight is always a joy. As with all of his albums, I know I will continue to discover and appreciate new complexities of the piece with each listen. Nas again proves that he is among the most gifted artists in hip hop and a master of his genre.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars racist album?, prehaps you should actually listen to it, August 17, 2009
By 
A. J. Rushton "fox" (melbourne VIC Australia) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
im writing this review after reading a range of reviews claiming that nas has released the most disgustingly racist anti-white anti-american album on the face of the earth, now to start with, being of mixed race (black\white if it matters to you) i was able to listen to the album without being offended at the first mention of a percieved racial slur, also not being an american i was able to listen to the album without being blinded by nationalist pride at the first mention of america not being entirely perfect, and i found the subject matter and issues adressed by the more pollitically charged tracks on the album to be quite thought provoking, and a welcome departure from the current slew of so called hip hop artists dominating mainstream music whose lyrical skills can only be described as sub par (im being as diplomatic as i possibly can and removing all the yelling\swearing that usually results when i discuss new rap) this is the type of music hip hop needs intelligent,deep and thought provoking.
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nas is Hip Hop's Hero!!!!, July 15, 2008
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
Aside from Nas being my favorite rapper, I can honestly say that this album is a milestone for Hip-Hop and for Nas is general. Like Public Enemy and Dead Prez (among other countless groups) Nas shows us why Hip-Hop is still the black or underground CNN, where important issues can be brought up and discussed diligently. Nas artistically rhymes about the minorities especially African Americans plight and ultimate survival in a biased and sometimes over oppressing America. Nas truly shines on this album and proves that he is the closest thing that we have for a mainstream artist that has an underground message and a civil rights consciousness. Seriously what rapper do you know can call an album N***** and intelligently explain it? These rappers play it safe and talk about stuff the average person does not live, rappers are telling us about glamor that we help provide, and we suck it up each time. Nas does not, the hours he spent reading at the library paid off, becuase he has the history and personal reflection to prove it. He literally is the Malcolm X of hip hop. Tracks like, You cant stop us now, Fried Chicken, Y'all My N*****, Project Roach, all of them are good, cop this album if not for hip hop, or the revolution, for yourself. Listen up Nas is teaching!!!!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Sickness of Hip Hop Has Finally Brought Nasty Nas Back, September 16, 2008
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
On his last album "Hip Hop Is Dead" Nasty Nas was challenged by other rappers on his statement. Only problem with that was he was being challenged by rappers and not true MC's like himself. This is the thing, Nas has never let fans down lyrically. He always delievers because he has something to say. When he made illmatic he had nothing but hunger, most MC's die after that cause they get paid and loose it. Nas will always have a hunger even if it isn't the same hunger he had on that classic album. For this he will always be one of the best if not the best.

The new album from Nas is major and also showed that he is starting to learn his lesson with his music. On every album except his first two, he has songs where he forgets that he is making music and not just a rap song. He utilizes every inch of the musical art in this album and makes great hip hop music. I take a half of a star because 2 or 3 tracks were not that good, like breathe, could just be me but I didn't like it that much. He also finally went out and got good, solid, and super star producers that tailor made beats that fit Nas's style perfectly. I was surprised to see the he didn't just do this on one track but had good production on almost every track.

You have no idea how surprised I was when I saw that Pollow da don actually did a track for him. Pollow put down a beat for one of the sickest nas singles in his career. The single was just perfect all around and it grabs attention. Fried Chicken is probably the illest song lyrically on this album. He does this all the time with songs like, "I gave you power", the track "Rewind" in reverse ON Stillmatic, and even this one again with "Project Roach".

This album is by far one of the best he has had in a few years. It is better than Hip Hop Is Dead so we know that Nas is progressing and not taking steps backward. My true rating is about 4 1/2 stars. There is no doubt that if you're reading this review and thinking about buying this, you need to get it, listen to it, and don't stop listening until you truly understand it all. Hip Hop Will never be dead as long as Nasty Nas is still alive.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly consistent, July 16, 2008
By 
adil ali (minneapolis,usa) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
You'd have to be a die-hard Nas fan of the strongest kind to deny that Nas's output has been spotty since his breakthrough album. Granted, this is one of the downfalls of releasing an album like Illmatic so early in the career, other rapper--I'm thinking of Jay-Z and Cormega- have been able to bounce back. Stillmatic was a serious return to form, God's Son was daring (to say the least) and Street's Disciple was an uneven double disc album that would have fared a lot better had it been trimmed down.
Whereas 2006's Hip Hop is Dead seemed revelatory, the new Nas album is more aware and considerably less cynical. The overall impression here is of a man who exists on the periphery of a decadent culture of music and politics but still hopes for some sort of compromise. For me, at least, this is the guiding theme in both the lyrics and approach to production(reflected best in "America","Sly Fox", and "Project Roach"). I won't even bother to compare it to Illmatic, but I will say that in this day and age of declining musical standards, hip hop needs Nas to breathe life into it once in a while.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LYRICS FOR THE AGES!!, July 15, 2008
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
Oh BOY!! Nas is going to push that creative envelope whether today's kids like it or not...he's not going to give you songs about mindless dances in an economy that is in the midst of a recession...people love to have fun but people also love to and NEED to learn...about themselves and about life in general....that's what Nas does here....he attempts to teach people about some things they may not have even thought about...having a good time is important but LEARNING is what will make the real difference in life..from the first track:"Queens Get The Money"....which just showcases Nas spitting lyrical fire so much so that he drowns out the beat...right on through "Breathe"(a message to our boys in blue)..."Fried Chicken"(not even eating poultry means that your eating right)..."Hero"(everybody needs one..lol..)..."N*****-The Slave And The Master"(If this doesn't make you stop and think about SOCIETY, then your not thinking)....he covers all spectrums here.....I think he aims this album at all races to start some much needed dialogue, which in 2008 is well needed.....in an election year this album shows even more relevance...I have two main words of advice for everybody out there: GET IT!! you won't be disappointed!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ***********************N************************, July 15, 2008
By 
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
This Album is probably not only the best of the year...but one of Nas best albums over his 10+ years of rapping....it finally seems that he's "Found Himself".....Simply put an Intellegent Gangsta....I've been a Nas fan since the age of 16 and have brought ever Album of his some even more than once...What I've seen is an artist that has found the happy medium between the streets and the "Positive" Informative rap.....in other words the reason why he's been able to consecutively sell a decent amount of albums over his career is because young black men from the hood that are misrepresented have always found Nas to be the closest mainstream representation of them. There are other artist whom have found that if you stay true to who you are no matter what you'll always have a Fan that will spend $10+ for the latest Disc. With this Disc Nas has finally Placed himself into the realm of "Our" Musicians...These Musicians are those that will not and have not Faded over the years...Aretha Franklin (The Queen of Soul), James Brown (The King of Soul), Micheal Jackson (The King Of Pop) Mary J. Blige (The Queen of Hip Hop Soul), Prince, Bono, Madonna, BIG, 2 Pac, Run DMC, Gladys Knight, Al Green, Jay-Z.....these are all people who bring about the thought of LEGENDARY...and whether you agree or not you have to be able to say that any one of those mentioned are at least "Arguably" the best in there Genre....which is what you can say with confidence about Nas....you have those one the spectrum of intellegent rap such as Common, Talib, Lupe...just to name a few and you also have those 15 minute ringtone rappers who sign the Bad deals, make one hit song, come up with the hotest most degrading dance and get to preform it on 106 and park (think "Franchise Boys, FLO RIDA, YOUNG JOC, BOW WOW, PRETTY RICKY, SOULJA BOY, and countless other Fly by night "Artist") before only being recycled into the next 5 clowns who are just happy to be seen and if lucky heard for more then 14 months. Nas has Finally been able to help us appreciate the Fact that he's somewhere in betwen, and the way that he does this is simply being NAS. The industry has really taken a sharp turn for the worse as of lately and it seems that we've all found ourselves being told that just because a few probesent teens think that it's hot than we should be subject to hear it on the radio every 5 times. You also have these rappers who all sound the same and tell a bunch of Lies about who they are and repsresent. But "Real recoginze Real" so those that are true to themselves will be the ones who countinue to sell Consecutively. Take 5-0 for example (for the true Hip Hop HEADS LISTEN TO TRACK ONE ON THIS CD...."TAKE 27 MC'S.....HIDING BEHIND 8 MILE AND THE CHRONIC..THAT'S 50" OBVIOUS JAB AT 50 CENT WHO IS PROSUMPTIVELY HIDING BEHID EMENIEM AND DR. DRE....THIS RIGHT HERE SHOWS THAT NAS IS WAY BEYOND THE COMPETITION AND IS TRULY ONLY RAPPING TO THE ELITE) This CD is probably one of the strongest of not just this year, but of the century.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hip-Hop music for grown ups, July 15, 2008
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
When Nas released Illmatic 14 years ago it was the most anticipated album of that year. Nas has survived the test of time staying relevant to his genre. Sure he's dropped some not so great albums, all of which failing to match the impact of Illmatic. This latest offering titled... Untitled is a perfect piece for fans that have grown up with Nas. Nas has grown up. His sound is refined and his lyrics are a reflection of someone who thinks about things other than jewelry and hookery. Tracks like "N.I.*.*.*.E.R.", "Hero", and "Sly Fox" are all examples of a more mature approach to an industry where grown men run around acting like teenagers. My only complaint about this album is that the production seems to be very generic. There was no music on this album that stood out to me to be innovative or overly creative. It's decent but just doesn't stand out. No DJ Premiere? And where is that Primo/Nas album that everyone was talking about a few years ago? Either way Untitled is a good album. Those of us Hip-Hop heads 30 years and up will appreciate Nas stepping up his game and giving us something that is not embarrassing to listen to.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I give it 4.5. What an album!, July 17, 2008
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
The song with the Game and Chris altered my decision. No it is not a weak song by any means. It just did not belong on this album. Kinda throws the flow of the album off just a tad bit. Other than that......Remember what it was like to go and purchase an anticipated hip hop album? Hardly could not sleep the night before it's release. You finally get it and play it over and over again while looking at the art work and the titles. Then you have other sleepless nights cause you wake up want to hear it in the middle of the night. Remember those days. This is what it this is like for me guys. How could anyone not like this album? Even if you are not into this brand of hip-hop or do not like NAS you got to admire how he lived up to the concept of this album.

Ni**ers is just so motivational and the late Easy E would have been proud. Testify is like the best conversation you ever had over a glass of the best cognac. Fried Chicken puts you in a metaphorical state. And Queens get the Money.....Ooooooooooh! ( Did you all catch how he took Rakim's taking out M.C.'s concept from 'Check out My Melody to another level). Brilliant! I like listening to this album alone with dim lights. Go and Cop this! Hey, there are a lot of good underground stuff out there.....but Hip Hop really did need this album. NAS has surpassed the legacy of Biggie and Pac. He is now his own man.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LOOK! ITS REAL HIP HOP!!, July 15, 2008
By 
This review is from: Nas (Audio CD)
FINALLY REAL HIP HOP HAS RESSURRECTED. FIRST AND FOREMOST LET ME SAY IF THIS ALBUM DOESNT GO PLATIUM, HIP HOP IS DEAD. IF THIS ALBUM DOESNT GET 5 MICS, HIP HOP IS DEAD. IF YOU DONT THINK THIS IS A CLASSIC HIP HOP ALBUM THEN ITS KOOL CAUSE YOU DONT UNDERSTAND WHAT REAL HIP HOP IS AND YOU HOULD GO BACK AND PLAY YOUR SOULJA BOY CD AND LICK YOUR LOLLY POP. AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST IF YOU DONT THINK THIS IS A CLASSIC ALBUM BECAUSE YOU DONT LIKE THE BEATZ THAT OBVIOUSLY MEANS YOU DONT LISTEN TO MUSIC YOUR THE TYPE TO "SKIM" THROUGH IT. YOU MUST HAVE MISSED THE JADAKISS QUOTE WHEN HE BASICALLY STATED THAT FAKE RAPPERS NEED A HOT BEAT TO HELP THEM OUT, BUT A TRUE MC RHYMES HELPS A SIMPLE BEAT TURN INTO A CLASSIC BEAT. STUDY NAS AND FIND OUT WHAT THIS RAP GAME, CULTURE,AND LIFESTYLE IS TRULY ABOUT.
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Nas
Nas by Nas (Audio CD - 2008)
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