LISTENNNN! WE THE BEST! WE GLOBAL! ME ANNOYING! Ahem, now that I’m done screaming and being obnoxious, here’s a review. Believe it or not, 3 of the 4 things I just yelled out are actual titles of albums by tonight’s reviewed artist. I’m talking about the latest album of DJ Khaled entitled: We Global. This is a positive review of course, but let me just make it clear to all the Khaled fans out there, you have to admit it’s a bit funny to see this big dude with an annoyingly high voice screaming all over his tracks. On the other hand, when he’s screaming “We the best!” it’s because he is (as far as mix tape DJs go anyhow).
So who is this DJ Khaled? Let’s chat about it for a minute. His actual name is Khaled Khaled…and honestly I don’t know how to feel about that, but I’ll move on. In his songs he is known for his shout outs for Dade County, Florida. Dade is also home to rappers Trick Daddy, Trina, and Flo Rida to name a few. Born in 1975, he’s a 33 year old Palestinian American, from Pembroke Pines. Khaled is a part of rapper Fat Joe’s Terror Squad, who releases their albums through Koch Records, the largest independent label in the United States.
Released mid September, We Global is Khaled’s third studio album, which featured the return of Akon, Rick Ross, Fat Joe, Bun B, Trick Daddy, and Birdman. I don’t know how Khaled can afford to have all these guys on his releases, but apparently rappers come to him, he doesn’t seek them out. Anyhow, let’s BaRF on this album so you can get a better picture.
Honestly, I can’t stop playing this cd, because even if for some reason you hate the schmorgisborg of rappers on this album, the beats are incredible. More familiar, are The Runners, who produced a previous Khaled mega hit I’m So Hood. The lesser known, but now more respected producers on this album are Akon, Cool & Dre, The Inkredibles, Danja, Gold Ru$h, DJ Nasty, LVM, Isaac Opus, The Diaz Brothers, DJ Montay, Gorilla Tek, and J-Rock.
Track 2, Go Hard, stands out as a good sign that the album you’re about to bump is ‘gonna hit you in tha head’. The Runners have always impressed me with their creativity and ability to jump from artist to artist and bring out the artists’ true form. The other insane track by The Runners is track 4, Go Ahead; which I hope becomes one of this winter’s club hits. It’s easy to dance to, and has the lyrics to boot. But more on that later.
Track 5, I’m On, was created by Cool & Dre, a producing team from Miami. What I loved about this track, is that you Nas fans out there will feel like the song is perfect for him, with the gothic bell introduction. The violin bridge to the chorus left me feeling like the song was trying to achieve an epic tone, with success.
When I heard the 8th track, She’s Fine, by Danja, I felt like this was the only track that would be suitable for Missy Elliot and Sean Paul to work together on. Busta Rhymes is also on it, but I’ll admit it felt like a bit of an awkward placement.
Track 10, Fuck the Other Side, by Gold Ru$h wins my approval due to the eerie noise and voices lingering through most of the song. I wasn’t the only one to love this song apparently, as DJ Drama sampled the beat on his latest album, Dedication 3. Both DJ’s kept the flow potential of this beat intact.
Track 12, Blood Money, has a raw beat that made it perfect for Brisco (one of the new artists on Cash Money Records). Isaac Opus will become a favorite of the gangster rap production world if he keeps up this record of talent.
At the end of the day though, I have to give the crown for the beats to the 11th track, Bullet. To be honest, I almost didn’t even listen to the track, because the random Jamaican rambling in the introduction just didn’t push my buttons. While letting the cd play all the way through, I realized that it was my type of beat. I love when beats go from a high to low scale. Also, I’m fond of the random beat dropping and returning during the duration of the track. There’s a subtle guitar doing a funky strum every change of note in the verses, so listen for that as well. Finally, I think it’s hard to find the right balance between Rap and Rasta. The last time I heard such a good mix was on Damian Marley’s album Welcome to Jamrock.
Again, Khaled is showing and proving a lot better that people are looking into. For instance, he delivered the only Kanye West verse in last year that I loved. This is on the second track, Go Hard. He talks about how he knows that he’s so sick with himself because of how big of a cocky asshole he is, while giving a dynamite final 4 bars (I won’t spoil the fun, just listen to it). But he’s only speaking the brutal, gut wrenching truth that made me love Kanye in the first place. None of this 808’s and Heartbreak nonsense.
As I stated earlier, what I’m hoping is a club hit for the next while is track 4, Go Ahead. I hadn’t really heard from Fabolous since that song Breathe he did years back, but he came in with a strong opening, and gave a decent verse. The second star of the song is Lloyd with the chorus that was pure Saturday night fun:I know you see me starin girl
I see you lookin at me You’re fine and it's apparent girl You feelin lucky ?streak? Girl tell me, what's on your mind, let me know Girl give me the go, give me the go ahead What's on your mind, let me know Girl give me the go, give me the go ahead
Track 5, I’m On, was good all around because Nas (or as Khaled says by the rappers first name Nassir) kills it with his talk about the good ol days in the ghetto. The chorus sung by Cool (one of the producers) mixed with the strings and the bass guitar made this song a favorite of mine:
Out of the shadows, into the lights I have a power, take back it's mine We have a power We are alive
Rick Ross has never really been a huge contender in my playlist, but I can’t stop listening to Track 11, Bullet. Without a doubt, this is the best I’ve heard Rick Ross. Jamaican artist Baby Cham rounded the song off perfectly, as this is a fundamentally Jamaican song. To be honest, I don’t think the lyrics are completely astounding, but the beat is so good, that the lyrics wouldn’t fit any other song as well as they did on this track
This album features a plethora of artists who I respect, and I don’t think there’s really a better pool to work with for this type of music. But the reason my score isn’t higher because Lil Wayne was nowhere to be found on this cd. I feel that this cd would have been perfect with him somewhere on it. When I first got it, I noticed all the other Cash Money Records members on here, but Weezy was nowhere to be found.
But alas, this cd does have Nas, Flo Rida, Kanye West, Missy Elliot, and a few others who I highly respect as artists. If anything, all of them have moved up a notch from this album. Also, trying to top the featurettes of DJ Khaled’s album We the Best is no easy feat. That album had both versions of I’m So Hood and We Takin’ Over; with rappers who made that album a hit by themselves.
Frankly, DJ Khaled has the best collection of rappers that you’ll see on a mix tape, and I can’t wait for his next mash up of talent. There’s definitely a formula for success, and I can’t figure out how he did it, but I appreciate his dedication and hard work to the mix tape game.
I think that any hip hop lover needs to add DJ Khaled to their collection, if only to bump something with gratuitous amounts of bass in your neighborhood to look cool. Since I was introduced to his music, I try to keep tabs on what he and the people he’s working with are creating. If you get the chance, pick up the Best Buy exclusive version of this cd for three extra tracks. iTunes also has a version of the cd with special tracks included exclusively. I hope you’ve enjoyed another BaRFed-on cd review, and that you give this album at least a one-through.
Until next time.