Lupe Fiasco makes relevant, conscientious, agreeable hip-hop music that anyone can get behind, regardless of exposure to -- or seclusion from -- the rap scene.
That said, the emcee's latest "mixtape," Enemy of the State: A Love Story, distances him from his do-right image, but not in a risky way. Fiasco delves into some of the self-promotion and profanity he once decreed himself to be above, but it's not done acrimoniously, in fact the tape is more mirthful than anything. Fiasco flows with an enthusiasm we haven't seen since his MySpace days, especially considering the relatively serious tone of 2007's The Cool.
Clocking in at a brief 22 minutes, Enemy of the State keeps things streamlined, borrowing two tracks from Jay-Z, a fairly recent instrumental off of Clipse's latest, and a mind-boggling (read: awesome!) scrounging of Kid A highlight and general bass-burner "The National Anthem." It's certainly not the first time a rapper has sampled Radiohead, but Fiasco attacks the track better than anyone has, starting with Lupe's "I don't think I'm the best, I just think I'm better than" and ending with Thom Yorke's hollow "everyone." And at that point I don't think you'll find many people who would disagree with him.
- Album title: Enemy of the State: A Love Story
- Artist: Lupe Fiasco
- Label: Mixtape
- Songs: (1) Intro (2) The National Anthem (3) Turnt Up (4) Fireman (5) Lazers (6) Angels (7) Rockin Wit the Best (8) Say Somethin' (9) Thank You (10) The One (11) That Funny Feeling