Release Date: Apr 21, 2009
Record label: Def Jam
Rick Ross :: Deeper Than RapMaybach Music/Def JamAuthor: Adam M. LevinThere's a lot of things about modern rap music that I don't like: from the simplistically produced rap records that dilute radio rotations every fifteen minutes on every station across the country to the uninteresting (and often drug-induced) "fresh new artists" that keep on spamming the e-mail inboxes of my fellow RapReviews staffers and myself, it's a hassle to even put effort into listening to the records anymore. The one thing that pisses me off THE MOST about today's rappers, however, is their lack of authenticity—especially when they lay so much claim to how "real" their records are.
Everything is big with Rick Ross. Triumphs, blunders, singles, videos, and everything else he does is huge, but having the audacity to call his third effort Deeper Than Rap is extra risky, especially since it's his first effort since being "exposed" as a former corrections officer. That's poison in the gangsta rap game, and while there's little here to sway the haters -- and certainly nothing "deep" -- the rapper's ability to steamroll over all of his shortcomings, along with all of our preconceived notions, is simply remarkable.
On his third and greatest LP, Miami hustler Rick Ross remains the same larger-than-life character he was on his breakout single, Hustlin', from two years ago. He continues to rhyme his name with the word "boss," rap about slinging cocaine and name-drop famous dealers. Slick R&B hooks from Auto-Tuners like The-Dream and T-Pain are still a mainstay. [rssbreak] He's undergone professional development, though.
How out of step with our times is comparing one’s crew to a yacht club? That’s only one example of the way Rick Ross celebrates wealth and status on his third album, Deeper Than Rap. Like many tracks here, though, ”Yacht Club” gets by on Ross’ impeccable beat selection. He may rap like he’s out of touch with reality, but with bass lines this deep and synths this huge, you might forget the present era’s woes yourself.
Why do people like Rick Ross? I mean, am I missing something? Granted, dude gave us Hustlin', one of the most concise and to-the-point songs about hustling that hip-hop (or any other genre) has ever seen. His character is one of rap's more well-defined, playing the part of mafioso drug boss with more gusto and consistency that any of his peers. Listening to his lazy rhymes and relaxed delivery, one actually gets a sense that Ross doesn't even need to rap.