It’s been a couple of years since the Hip-Hop world heard from their favorite North Carolina son J. Cole. He has dropped a few teaser singles here and there but no major releases. Recently, he ended this hiatus and graced the masses with his sixth studio project aptly titled The Off-Season. The album’s release was accompanied by a documentary and a brief promotional stint via the LP’s “Interlude” track. Additionally, the twelve-track collective see’s the Fayetteville emcee embracing collaborations with guest appearances by the likes of: 21 Savage, Lil Baby, 6lack, Morray, and Bas.

95 South” kicks things off with a bit of nostalgia and an undeniable energy. There is a word or two from veteran rapper Cam’ron and a Mario Brother’s reference that instantly became a fan favorite quotable. Pair all of that with the crunk ending courtesy of a snippet from Lil Jon and The East Side Boyz and a buzzing tone is set for the rest of the album. Another standout track early on is “My Life” featuring 21 Savage and Morray. The trio take listeners through their road to success and give a glimpse of the possibility of what their fates would be like if their talents hadn’t taken off. 21 really thrives on this record. Debates were even sparked as to whether or not he outshined his North Carolina peer. The momentum is definitely still going strong at this point.

 

About midway through Cole’s musical exercise to become his best self, we are hit with “Pride Is The Devil.” The track features Lil Baby and though not an official single, it has gained popularity amongst the people. The sleek instrumental gives way to a charismatic vibe that is complimented by a simple yet memorable hook. The content sees the two emcees speak on their personal dealings with one of the seven deadly sins as well as their struggles not to succumb to it’s grip. The production starts to slightly lose steam around this point, but the written is still hitting.

Promo single “Interlude” heads up the tail end of The Off-Season. The single runs on the shorter side but it gets the job done. Cole utilizes an infectious flow as he expands on a wide range of topics from street violence to his front runner status in the rap game,  to religion, and more. Set to a groovy instrumental with soulful accents, the song serves well as a sample that leaves you wanting more from Cole. Great choice as one of the leading tracks.

The off season is typically the time for athletes to work on improving their crafts so that they come back stronger for the next season. J. Cole nails that concept with this album for sure. Now he’s just gotta work on his actual basketball game (lol).

— Following her 2016 breakthrough album, Laila’s Wisdom, Rapsody prepares to release her third and most anticipated project, Eve.

Back in June, Rapsody announced that she’d soon be releasing a new album titled, Eve. She also shared her desire to name each song after a Black woman due to her belief that she is an extension of every Black woman. Well, ‘soon’ is quickly transitioning into ‘now’ as Rapsody has dropped the official cover art and tracklist.

The album, named after the Bible’s original woman, includes tracks named after some of Rapsody’s greatest female inspirations such as Sojourner Truth, Nina Simone, Aaliyah, Maya Angelou, Michelle Obama, Tyra Banks, Serena Williams, and more. The tracklist also reveals a number of big-name features including Queen Latifah, J. Cole, Mereba, Elle Varner, D’Angelo, GZA, J.I.D, Leikeli 47, PJ Morton, SiR, and K. Roosevelt.

So far, Rapsody has only released one single titled, “IBTIHAJ”, featuring D’Angelo and GZA along with an accompanying music video. The music video, directed by Jay Scorsese and Misa Hylton, was a powerful representation of the power and beauty of Black women and even included surprise cameos from Hip-Hop legends Mary J. Blige and Roxanne Shanté.

Eve, which follows up Rapsody’s two previous albums The Idea of Beautiful (2012) and Grammy-nominated Laila’s Wisdom, is due for release on Friday, August 23rd via Roc Nation.

Tracklist:

  1. NINA
  2. CLEO
  3. AALIYAH
  4. OPRAH ft. Leikeli 47
  5. WHOOPI
  6. SERENA
  7. TYRA
  8. MAYA ft. K. Roosevelt
  9. IBTIHAJ ft. D’Angelo + GZA
  10. MYRLIE ft. Mereba
  11. Reyna’s Interlude
  12. MICHELLE ft. Elle Varner
  13. IMAN ft SiR + J.I.D
  14. HATSHEPSUT ft. Queen Latifah
  15. SOJOURNER ft. J. Cole
  16. AFENI ft. P.J. Morton

J. Cole, together with fellow Dreamville Records‘ artists EARTHGANG, Ari Lennox, J.I.D, Omen, Cozz, Bas, and Lute, present Revenge of The Dreamers III, and it’s nothing but the dream compilation we’ve all been waiting for. 

Dreamville Records, founded by J. Cole and his manager Ibrahim Hamad, has finally released the next chapter, a long-awaited follow-up to part II (2015). The album also features guest artists Kendrick Lamar, Buddy, Ty Dolls $ign, Vince Staples, Dreezy, and much more greatness.

Revenge of The Dreamers III (ROTD3) is the ultimate euphoria for hip-hop and alternative R&B fans alike, placing listeners within a realm of rapture; an epic line-up of astounding artists, an unrivalled lyrical flow, bustling bars, heavy-hitting hooks, fresh beats, honey-like melodies, and of course, topped off with the quintessential soul samples to have you hypnotised from the very start until end.

This 18-track marvel is simply incalculable; the procured result of both a collaboration and a community of artists that no one other than J. Cole could bring together.

Listen now below.