#4 Album of The Year: Pusha T- My Name Is My Name

Posted: December 31, 2013 by ericbernsen in Album Reviews, Music
Tags: , , , ,

Although My Name Is My Name was an album that was continuously delayed throughout most of 2013, Pusha T was adamant in calling his record the best album of the year. After releasing a couple solid mixtapes, fans of Pusha T’s work as a member of the Clipse had been dying for a proper studio album from the coke-rap lyricist. Well nowadays Pusha T as joined forces with Kanye West as fellow G.O.O.D. Music members and standout track off Cruel Summer “New God Flow” showed what kind of hard hitting hip-hop the two could make together. Kanye West has his hands all over My Name Is My Name as the project’s executive producer, and luckily for Pusha the results are successful to say the least. 

Even album opener “King Push” is highly reflective of Kanye’s recent work as a vocal sample is taken from Yeezus single “New Slaves” and placed over horror movie style synths. Pusha T commands attention on the track spitting menacing bars and flowing effortlessly over the drum-line. Pusha T is a pure street rapper that glorifies a life of crime, yet still describes the risks and consequences that come with it. This is best reflected on “Hold On”, a track featuring Pusha T and Rick Ross lamenting as they offer vocal support for those who have been imprisoned due to the drug game. Ross comes through with an inspired verse and the Auto-Tuned vocals of Kanye over the somber piano chords surprisingly make the song a puzzle fully solved.

Nevertheless, it is the hard-hitting hustler themed tracks from Pusha T that are the high-point of My Name Is My Name. Minimalistic Kanye West produced (among others) single “Numbers On The Boards” gave fans confirmation that the raw raps of Pusha T would not be musically compromised on his first solo studio album. Dope boy lyrics such as “It’s only one God, and it’s only one crown, So it’s only one king that can stand on this mound, King Push, kingpin, overlord, Coast Guard come a hundred goin’ overboard, I got money with the best of ’em, Go blow for blow with any Mexican” highlight Pusha T as a grizzly veteran emcee that sounds hungry as ever.

While Pusha T recruits many guests on the album, the one who shines the brightest is the gifted Kendrick Lamar on “Nostetalgia” as he practically steals the show over the dark slow guitar burn production. Pusha T and K Dot spit menacing bars about growing up in their drug-filled ghetto communities and the track is one of the hardest joints of the year in my opinion. It is these kinds of special moments that put a damper on other guest features such as 2 Chainz, Big Sean, and Kelly Rowland. While songs like “Let Me Love You” and “Who I Am” survive off their strong production, no one meets the challenge of matching Pusha T bar-for-bar and the Rowland guest spot seems a little out of place. Nevertheless, tracks like “Suicide” (featuring Ab Liva) bring the listener back to the glory days of the Clipse and Re-Up Gang. Pusha T also manages to collaborate with R&B stars Chris Brown (“Sweet Seranade”), Future (“Pain”), and The Dream (“40 Acres”). Each track sounds organically created just for My Name Is My Name as they fit well within the overall scope of the album, and Pusha T’s experimental choices pay off.

The last track we hear on the album comes courtesy of Pharrell and once again The Neptunes producer does not disappoint and continues with his dominant 2013 run. “S.N.I.T.C.H” is a fitting closer to My Name Is My Name as Pusha T and Pharrell highlight the story of a mutual friend who decided to become a police informant. These two have worked together for years and this grand finale demonstrates the spectacular chemistry they maintain to this day. My Name Is My Name is a concise body of work that peaks at Mt. Everest heights with tracks like “S.N.I.T.C.H” and “Nosestalgia”. Other songs suffer from the fact that guests can’t match the rawness of the record, but verse after verse Pusha T proves that he is still a top-notch lyricist. The overall brilliant production on the project allows Pusha’s cold delivery to flourish on an album that was well thought out and calculated. King Push had every right be confident in this album as it is one of the best pure rap records of 2013.

Listen to My Name Is My Name below and let us know what you think of the review/rating!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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