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T.I. - King (Atlantic)

About.com Rating 4 Star Rating
User Rating 5 Star Rating (1 Review)

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T.I. - King (Atlantic)

Album Cover © Atlantic

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The release of T.I.'s fourth album, King, was designed to coincide with his big screen debut in the movie ATL - a rewarding business move indeed. The album itself is packaged with enough gems to make this one of T.I.'s most captivating albums ever.

T.I. Finally Gets It Right

Let's get this straight: T.I. is not the king of southern hip-hop. But, with his swagger-jacking charm on the microphone, and enough charisma to convince you that he's really running things in his department, he just might be the Jay-Z of the south. T.I.(born Clifford Harris jr.) first sneaked into the rap scene with the poorly-promoted I'm Serious, before releasing the street favorite, Trap Muzik. Following a mixed reaction to his commercially-patented third entry, Urban Legend, the 26-year old Atlanta forerunner has now found the much-elusive balance between accessible tracks and street anthems on King.

Royal Entry

Every king needs blaring horns and trumpets to announce his royal entry. So, T.I. does that keenly with the Just Blaze-produced “King Back," where he "welcomes you to get acquainted with the youngest in charge" while running down his rap catalog to enlighten those that slept. However, you can't help but observe the conceptual similarities to Jay-Z's opener from The Blueprint - “The Ruler's Back." Make no mistakes though, Tip's slow-drawl-laid-back flow is all his. A couple more minutes into the album, the chart-topping single “What You Know" helps put mud-slingers in check over DJ Toomp's synth-heavy production.

Impressive Collaborations

After several years in the game, T.I. truly understands how to play the collaboration card, and King shows off this strength. The most blissful synergy on the album comes via "Good Life" featuring Common and Pharrell Williams. The Neptunes‚ piano-tinged loops inspire T.I. to spit truth: “Even when my days were in the blues, never ran from adversity, just ran to it‚ with Common supplying equally ingenious rhymes. UGK fans are then treated to a pleasure trip on “Front Back," a rework of Bun B and Pimp C classic ‚“Front Back, Side To Side." Similarly, ATL heads would hail the Young Jeezy - T.I. connection on "I'm Straigh"t which features a rejuvenated B.G. With the exception of a few sonic mishaps like “Stand Up Guy" and the chaotic Swizz Beats production on‚“Get It," which do little to hurt the album's overrall outlook, T.I. manages to balance accessible gems with street anthems on King.

King Me

King is not only T.I.'s most captivating album so far, it's probably the best thing to come out of the "A-Town" lately. And, as Pimp C explains on one of the album's many skits, a "king" is anyone that handles his business appropriately on the lyrical side of things, and many kings abound in southern rap. With such foraying display of bravado, T.I. has rightfully earned his membership to hip-hop's elite. Royal salute!

    Top Tracks

  • What You Know
  • Good Life
  • I'm Straight
  • Told You So
  • Bankhead

User Reviews

Reviews for this section have been closed.

 5 out of 5
Indeed, King., Member technicaldeathstrike

This is outrageous. ""Good Life"" ""Front Back"" ""I'm Straight"" all positive as Adaso said, but not only them for fans. Even ""Stand Up Guy"" ""Get It"" which Adaso evaluated low, fans can grasp them as ""King's club banger"" with ""I'm Talkin' to You"" ""I'm Straight"" and extraordinary ""Bankhead"" as well. Of course lead single ""What You Know"" is the one which cannot be lost when people talk about southern hip-hop legend. T.I. has finally finished his remaining hatreds, and joined to the ""VIP club"" which organized by elite rappers such as Outkast, Junior MAFIA, Kanye West, and Snoop Dogg. Royal salute!

16 out of 17 people found this helpful.

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