Review Summary: B.A.R was a highly anticipated mixtape put out by Wiz Khalifa. More often than not, Wiz Khalifa trips over the idea of having good beats to accompany his nice voice and good flow and falls flat on his face lyrically.
Pittsburgh rapper Wiz Khalifa has been on the scene for awhile, releasing his debut album Show and Prove in 2006. In 2008, he gained urban radio play with his hit single Say Yeah. Lots of people have proclaimed him to have potential, but one official album and seven official mixtapes into his career (Since 2005) he’s never really arrived as a rapper. This is his last official mixtape, before the supposed 2009 release of Deal or No Deal. In his attempt to garner his highest fan following yet, Wiz Khalifa presents Burn After Rolling. B.A.R was highly anticipated and garnered 15,000+ listens and 1,000+ downloads almost a full 24 hours after it was released. And I have no idea why…
This is just like a typical, everyday, fully-funded rap album you’d see on iTunes. Wiz Khalifa has a good flow, with the occasional bump in the road; he has a good voice unless he autotunes or sings which occurs once or twice; his lyrics are bland more often than not, but have their ups and downs on the meter; and the beats are usually above average with the occasional misfire and the occasional masterpiece. It’s just a bunch of songs that are bad because (at least) one aspect of the song strung along with the occasional good song few and far between. For example: The first good song is Take Yo Bitch, but then I have to wade through six decent to bad ones to get to the next good song, Young Khalifa. Then I have to wade through another two bad songs to get to a good song, When U Find. You get the point. I’d download single tracks off of this mixtape, but not the whole mixtape.
Wiz Khalifa is not mainstream, but he’s not alternative either…or gangsta for that matter. He’s uncategorized, just floating adrift waiting for some subgenre of rap to claim him. He contradicts himself and confuses listeners. He autotunes on If I Were a Lame, but then disses T-Pain on Say U Will; he disses mainstream rappers, but then samples Best I Ever Had by Drake on Ode To Naked Pop Stars. He gets his gangsta on in some tracks, but then turns around and talks about the high quality of his life and money. He even, on occasion, talks about love and life. Nowadays, diversity in albums is widely demanded by fans of all musical genres, but indiscernible diversity is not.
Wiz Khalifa apparently has a love of being a trap door rapper. Throughout the entire mixtape, you feel as if a good punchline is coming up. He sets up well. But he ends so badly it will make you swear aloud sometimes. He can have his great lyrical moments. For example: on When U Find, “I need you like a weed stick/Life without you is like Kelly no Regis,” and on Great To Be Here, “I am always spaced out like Elroy/And my bill faces big like Hellboy” but more often than not he falls face first in the dirt lyrically.
Khalifa comes up with a few good songs on this album, but they aren’t nearly epic enough to save this ‘meh’ album. It’s available for download on http://www.datpiff.com, but I wouldn’t recommend downloading the whole thing. It does have its moments, but seeing as you can’t download single tracks on DatPiff without paying for a premier membership, its null and void somewhat. A lot of people say Khalifa is the next big thing, which is debatable but entirely possible. But, you have to remember, the ‘next big thing’ isn’t always…any good.