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Rick Ross - God Forgives, I Don't (Def Jam/UMG)

About.com Rating 3 Star Rating

By

Rick Ross - God Forgives, I Don't (Def Jam/UMG)

Rick Ross - God Forgives, I Don't

© Def Jam

Let it not be said that Rick Ross is one to let a tried-and-true formula go to waste. God Forgives, I Don't follows the same exaggerated mafioso-rap-meets-lush-production script Ross has been patenting for years. It worked, with varying levels of success, on his solo albums and on the Self-Made series. So he extends it for one more album.

Familiarity doesn't always breed contempt. In Rozay's case, it simply robs the work of surprise. But that's the least offensive thing about God Forgives, I Don't.

It's also aimless and, at times, boring. You'd have thought Ross' brush with death would've brought him into a meditative place. Wishful thinking, you say. All right then, I'll settle for restraint. But no, he aspires to cinematic grandeur instead. Ross, tripping over his larger-than-life portraits stitched to swanky frames, can't see a singular focus, knows it, keeps going -- heaps on lofty visions, tries to please everyone, and is nearly knocked off by his guests at every turn. "3 Kings" is warm soda. "Touch'N You" is unspeakably bad.

Missteps notwithstanding, GFID isn't without its bright moments, for Ross has a way with words and an ear for beats. It is enjoyable in portions, like on "16", where Andre 3000 explores the subject of trying to squeeze a meaningful narrative into 16 bars while squeezing a meaningful narrative into 16 bars. The whole thing lasts 8 minutes and 16 seconds, but you won't notice. "Ashamed" is a delight. "Ice Cold" knocks. GFID needed more of these moments, but Ross prefers to keep those "tears on the inside."

Overall, the project is a missed opportunity to make a much needed artistic leap. It's a trenchcoat with torn holes; a split screen of fantasy and reality in an unnatural combination. Honesty doused with overpriced champagne.

Top Tracks
  • "Ice Cold"
  • "Ashamed"
Released: July 31st, 2012
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