Soulja Boy
The DeAndre Way


2.0
poor

Review

by ok im bulldogs alt USER (11 Reviews)
November 30th, 2010 | 91 replies


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist


In his March, 2006 review of Juvenile’s Reality Check, Pitchfork writer Tom Breihan notes that “in Southern rap, it’s not so much about you say as how you say it.” Be this axiom true – and for the most part, it is – rapper/entrepreneur Soulja Boy has aesthetically fraternized with the lowest of the low for the duration of his career. Due to over-simplistic lyrical stylization and a blasé flow, Soulja Boy relied on his infectious production style and penchant for poppy hooks on his first two albums in order to move units. Much to the chagrin of hip-hop purists, professional critics, and Ice-T, souljaboytellem.com and iSouljaBoyTellEm were endeavors in extravagant escapism; saturated in a surplus of straight-to-radio singles and ringtone rap choruses. One thing people tend to neglect though. Soulja Boy – regardless of his 100-plus tattoos, commercial success, and exponentially growing entrepreneurial empire – at nineteen is still more or less a kid, and with “Crank That”, was thrown into the spotlight left to fend himself and to learn as he went along. To make it as a teenager in one of the most boomin’ industries in the world, and to do it just by pulling *** out of your ass as you go along is impressive, and Soulja Boy deserves his props for that if nothing else. Moreover, as Kanye noted, Soulja Boy was inventing a brand new style, which is something inherent in the spirit of the genre. However, The DeAndre Way is just the first step towards what most would dub as maturation, and pardon the triteness of his older material and lend an ear to his third full-length, and effectively, what might as well be his first.

Sadly, the first step into his first step isn’t what you would want, and the album is largely cluttered. “First Day of School” kicks off with a minimalist beat and Soulja Boy wallows in pedantry as he mutates and accents his phonetics not too dissimilar from the manner he did in the hook of his 2007 song “Wuz Hannanan”. (If you don’t know the song or the vocal segment I’m referring to, don’t fret, just know that it’s possibly the worst vocal performance ever by a rapper.) The following tracks aren’t much better, “Touchdown” is an unmitigated sports-rapper lifestyle analogy cliché and “Hey Cutie” is just as sickening as its title would suggest. But then…something happens. Something beautiful.

That something is the highlight of Soulja Boy’s young career; a four-song win streak that transcends its creator’s previous works, and it starts with “Speakers Going Hammer”. It’s a subtly impressive lyrical effort with extended rhyme schemes that seep into one another and undergo syllabic permutation as they progress, syllabic consistency, clever internals, an abundance of traditional similes, and a catchy hook and plenty of swagger to boot. “Pretty Boy Swag” is an ode-to-self delivered through a Kenarbanian vocalization; a fun song with a ticking drumline, light, booping synths, and dark, violent piano notes. “30 Thousand 100 Million” is a great track where Soulja Boy out-swags the BasedGod over an oddball beat with glassy, rattling synths. “Mean Mug” sees a revitalized 50 Cent who returns to his heyday, delivering resounding gangsterisms left and right and spouts gun talk numeracy while Soulja Boy supplies a surprisingly hard-sounding chorus over a signature. Then as the signature Drumma Boy beat rides out…

It’s gone.

Just like that, the stroke of excellence is gone, and the album proceeds to suck again and subsequently end on a whimper. “Blowing Me Kisses” is so lyrically corny and musically sugary, “Fly” is awkward as it just isn’t down Soulja Boy’s artistic alleyway at all, and “Grammy” is a half-baked attempt at recreating the sonic vein of the trio of singles on Eminem’s Recovery. However, Soulja Boy is more plagued by what’s not here than what is. With the abundance of filler on this album, it’s ***ing astounding that several tracks – “Digital”, “Pow”, “I’m Boomin’”, “Kickin’”, “Y.G.R.N” and “Swag OD” featuring Lil B, and “Money Gang Rock” featuring Arab and JBar – didn’t make the cut, because if they had, this would be a legitimately great album, or at least a fun one.

I understand that track-by-track reviews are traditionally taboo and are serious no-no’s and are typically reserved for newer writers. However, due to the stylistic variation and short run time of The DeAndre Way, it was practically unavoidable. But if one concept should be derived from this review, it’s that Soulja Boy is getting better. Seriously, “Speakers Going Hammer” is one of the more impressive lyrical performances this year. Check it – and this – out before you demand that I be thrown in the loonie bin. At the very least, you’ll be surprised; I promise.



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user ratings (86)
Chart.
1.6
very poor
other reviews of this album
Hyperbomb180 (1.5)
This...right here....is pure ....CRAP...


Comments:Add a Comment 
TomAndJerry
November 30th 2010


144 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

fuck artwork.

album leaked a while ago. 4-7 is just fucking awesome. been listening to alot of soulja boy lately, tbh. flame me

"im the type to rock yellow diamonds to match my car, you the type to live under a rock patrick star"

KILL3
November 30th 2010


601 Comments


hey

conradtao
Emeritus
November 30th 2010


2090 Comments


glad I'm not the only one who thought "pretty boy swag" was pretty good

HalfManHalfAmazing
November 30th 2010


565 Comments


"im the type to rock yellow diamonds to match my car, you the type to live under a rock patrick star"



Did Soulja Boy attempt and successfully pull off a multi-syllabic rhyme? No way...

Metalstyles
Staff Reviewer
November 30th 2010


8371 Comments


it starts with “Speakers Going Hammer”. It’s a subtly impressive lyrical effort with extended rhyme schemes that seep into one another and undergo syllabic permutation as they progress, syllabic consistency, clever internals...
Good for you if you find so much satisfaction in syllables and in the structure of them but imo it doesn't really matter shit if the lyrics he spews out are still godawful.

But pretty good review Bulldog.

EDIT: also, you could word the conclusion much better while still carrying forward the same thought (I don't think your personal commentary on tbts and your own review is necessary)

TomAndJerry
November 30th 2010


144 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

thanks metalstyles. ill edit that

illmitch
November 30th 2010


5429 Comments


Did Soulja Boy attempt and successfully pull off a multi-syllabic rhyme? No way...


listen to this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8cCzbFTbavQ

TomAndJerry
November 30th 2010


144 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

swag made ya girl go pow, swag made ya girl go powpowpow.

have you heard this yet mitch?

illmitch
November 30th 2010


5429 Comments


nah i havent been checking out much new music since my ipod and external hard drive broke

this is a good review though, with the exception of "aesthetically fraternized", "endeavors in extravagant escapism", and the other examples of alliteration. use literary devices sparingly

MUNGOLOID
November 30th 2010


4333 Comments


swag made ya girl go pow, swag made ya girl go powpowpow.

dig the beat to that song.

illmitch
November 30th 2010


5429 Comments


yeah pow was awesome dunno why it didnt make it onto this

Gyromania
November 30th 2010


15941 Comments


Review is pretty good, pos.

Digging: Lantlos - .neon

HalfManHalfAmazing
November 30th 2010


565 Comments


"listen to this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8cCzbFTbavQ"

Holy shit that was actually good


SoapySoap
November 30th 2010


865 Comments


If Souljia Boy can do that, why the fuck is he making songs like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_2Swsm89oQ&feature=related

Scoot
November 30th 2010


17817 Comments


Sucks slightly less than the last two

illmitch
November 30th 2010


5429 Comments


If Souljia Boy can do that, why the fuck is he making songs like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_2Swsm89oQ&feature=related


because he doesnt make music to appeal to white kids who post on music review sites on the internet

weird isnt it

TomAndJerry
November 30th 2010


144 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Money gang rock

Urinetrouble
November 30th 2010


5764 Comments


who deleted my comment? its perfectly valid to this thread, it had something to do with souljaboy

White>Souljaboy but both suck by a long shot

robertsona
Staff Reviewer
November 30th 2010


15051 Comments


yeah ok


andcas

Enotron
November 30th 2010


7695 Comments


why do people listen to albums they know will be bad



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