Throughout this year, I swore up and down that my guy Cozz had next. Well he finally gets his chance to shine, as his debut album “Effected” has finally dropped! With the backing of J.Cole, I expect a splash of greatness in it, and anticipate pretty damn good bars from the Dreamville up and comer. Enough speculating, it’s time to hear if he lives up to the expectations.
5. HUSTLA’S STORY
“Hustla’s Story” feels like a song by two homies that were chillin’ in the streets, trading bars to pass time. It has this cold ass feel to it, as both Cozz and Kendrick drop some serious hood knowledge over this numbing instrumental. While Cozz keeps it pretty street on his verse — rapping with the same aggression he usually raps with, Kendrick decided to drop this tongue-twisting verse that mixes in a little bit of harmonizing into the equation. It’s a pretty dynamic collaboration by two completely different street raised rappers.
“Zendaya” is probably the most organic song on this album.
“Zendaya” is soulful, it has both Cole and Cozz rapping about their random thoughts, and perfectly symbolizes the brotherhood that they have. I also think it contains some pretty relatable verses, as both rappers discuss their come-up while even dropping a few light-hearted bars throughout their verses. You always need at least one stripped down song like this on your album to succeed.
3. FREAKY 45
“Freaky 45” has Cozz transforming into Cole for 4 minutes and 39 seconds.
Cozz has this lowkey ability to storytell when he raps, usually giving us an account of something that is either happening or has happened in his life. In “Freaky 45,” he does just that, keeping it real about his mindset when it comes to younger women. The hook on this song is very infectious, his words are as descriptive as it gets on his verses, and every line he drops is real to every guy who is frustrated with dating girls that aren’t good for our careers.
“Badu” is just as amazing as the dedicated’s booty!
Over this chill/mellow instrumental, Cozz spits harder than he probably needs to, dropping these slick ass bars over this jazz heavy instrumental. You can hear the energy in each line he delivers, as he navigates through the song like a pure voyager.
Can Curren$y fit this track any better? On his previous work, he was rapping over beats like these, so you knew this s–t was going to be target practice for him. The NO spitter definitely murders this s–t with his consistent flow and boss-like lyrics, sounding like he’s sitting in his office conducting several different drug deals while spitting on the mic.
I didn’t expect Cozz and Curren$y to have such good chemistry!
“Questions” is short, but it is way too lyrical to not end up in my top 5! The track opens the album up, and on it, you get these serious ass bars from Cozz that sorta reminds me of some old school Wu-Tang s–t. His lyrics come across as gritty, and the anger in his voice when he raps indicates to me that he is looking to bum rush his competition to get to the top. Talk about coming out swinging!
SONG BY SONG BREAKDOWN
1. QUESTIONS (5/5)
2. HUSTLA’S STORY (5/5)
3. IGNORANT CONFIDENCE (4.8/5)
4. DEMONS N DISTRACTIONS (4.5/5)
5. FREAKY 45 (5/5)
6. PROOF (4.5/5)
7. BADU (5/5)
8. BOUT IT (4.8/5)
9. VANNESS (4/5)
10. EFFECTED (4.4/5)
11. MY LOVE (3.7/5)
12. THAT’S THE THING (4/5)
13. ZENDAYA (5/5)
14. NOT A MINUTE MORE (3.9/5)
Cozz sounds super hungry on this album, and as a hip hop junkie, I love every second of it! From the moment you press play, Cozz makes sure you are feeling his s–t, getting as passionate as ever when he needs to. It almost feels like every beat the Los Angeles based rapper chose to rap over screamed out “kill me,” and Cozz did just that. I love the assassin in him!
Perhaps the most impressive thing about this album is its consistency production-wise. I’m not here to say that it is the next Illmatic when it comes to that aspect, but it does have that Illmatic-like feel to it (Hood inspired vibes) that hip hop fans will enjoy. He never raps over any gimmicky beats, or dabbles in anything he can’t handle, he simply put together 14 instrumentals that effectively play second fiddle to his heavy-hitting bars.
Not too many times you get an album with both J. Cole and Kendrick featured on it; and never do you get an album in which neither song that featured these respective rap legends was the best one. That is how highly I think of Cozz’s contributions to this album, as he came out with a chip on his shoulder, and it translates to this body of work that is as raw as it gets. Cozz has a bright future, and I think it got a tad bit brighter with this debut album.