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Who would have thought that Rick Ross would have made it to his 8th studio album? The much anticipated album, Black Market was released on December 4, 2015. If there is something that no one can deny Rozay in, it would have to be his consistency and longevity. He is coming up on 10 years in the game, as he has been blazing radio with tracks since 2006. He’s had a song or has been featured on a song that has been on Billboard charts, every year for almost a decade. There is no denying Rick Ross’s hustle, from mixtapes, to collaborative albums, and to managing his own label MMG. The million dollar question with Ross is, has his content grown or has it declined? Does Rick Ross 8th album live up to its expectations? To answer that it depends on what you are looking for. Personally, I say no. He continues to rap about the same thing on this album as he did on all his previous albums. I was expecting a little broader concept on this album but it looks likes the money has taken him over. Black Market consists of the same Ross formula, women, drugs and money. Many would call him an artist for the streets but not even that statement is accurate because many in the street cannot relate to the material things that Ross loves to spit about. One thing that I can say is that this album is better than, Hood Billionaire. As usual the production on the album is on point and as usual the lyrics will leave you skipping through, looking for something more. As for the tracks, I will break down each song.

Free Enterprise: We already know what to expect from Ross and John Legend on a track. This is not their best song together but it sets the tone for the album. The beat is hot and he spits some of the realist stuff that he ever said. 4/5

“Assassinate Trump like I’m Zimmerman
Now accept these words as they came from Eminem
Democratic party sentenced to the pendulum
Killing them, I voted for Andre Benjamin”

Smile Mama, Smile: This has to be one of Ross’s hardest songs on the album. Nobody else could have bless the chorus like Cee-Lo did. 4.5/5

“No I never really mind that we caught the bus
Or that we always stand in line, I’m talkin’ all of us
It made me stronger, it made me quicker on my feet
All the gain she gave me the love that she would teach”

One Of Us: I am disappointed by this song. I expected a verbal warfare but all I got was unpolished delivery and charisma on this song. Nas verse was tight but he delivered it poorly. Ross two verses were short. Production was regular, nothing fresh. 3/5

Silk Road: Dope song but what is he really talking about?  He just really putting a bunch of words together. Nothing that we haven’t heard 3.5/5

Color Money: I like the song on the strength that he took a shot at Drake. It was necessary because Meek Mill died a horrible death. Production has a No Limit feel to it. 4/5

“Color money got your bitch out on a world tour

My lil homie made a million on his girl tour

We back to back and down to whack a nigga unborn

Miami n****s got them changing all the gun laws

So run Forrest got some shooters and they dying too

I got more money than that pussy that you’re signed to”

Dope D***: Ever since he got engaged and lost some weight, Ross has been feeling his self lately. The song cool but what are we getting out of it? He took a shot at 50 cent on a song titled, Dope D***. You could have at least made a diss on another track. Nice bar going at 50 but again should have picked another song. 3.5

“On the road to riches, bitch I can rewrite the map
Still stuffin’ money in a minivan
200 acres, goofy I just built the Disneyland
Get Rich or Die Tryin’, yeah that was 50 plan

Filed the chapter 11, guess the n**** kidneys failed”

Crocodile Python: This is another filler song for the album. It’s just there. Same ol, same ol from Ross.  3/5

GhostWriter: This song should have been placed on the Rich Forever mixtape. The content of the song is self-explanatory. Same lyrics. 3/5

Black Opium: Right now I’m feeling discouraged to finish the cd by now. I’m thinking DJ Premiere about to lace Ross and again Ross lays an egg. Scratches are dope but lyrics are not anything that we have not heard from him. 2/5

Can’t Say No: Here we have another cliché radio song. He is infamous for radio songs but it seems like he is starting to lack with each radio song he puts out. Mariah Carey is on the hook but not even that saves this track. 2/5

Peace Sign: WACK! Nothing else needs to be explained. 1/5

Very Best: This song is dope, thank for MJB blessing the track. This track is my personal favorite, off the album. 3/5

“I know the devil try so I get on my knees and pray
Jesus still walks, we marchin’ in a parade
Black and white holding hands
While letting that thing blaze”

Sorry: These types of Ross songs are old and tired. A hot beat, subpar verses, and throw trey or Chris on the hook. 2/5

D.O.P.E: I am completely bored now. Women + money + Future = overplayed out formula. 2/5

The production on the album is the only bright spot. The lyrics were subpar at best. For Ross to be on his 8th studio album ,one would think that he would present a new flow, and display some growth in his content but that doesn’t happen. This album is no different from his last. It has been 8 albums and I can’t distinguish between any of them except Teflon Don. With the hype of Black Market, I think everyone was expecting a classic, but Ross just didn’t deliver. One can even make an argument that his Black Dollar mixtape is better than this album. If this album does anything, it exposes the fact that Rick Ross is lyrically stagnant. He’s obviously found a formula and he is determined to milk that. Black Dollar certifies that Rick Ross should not be mentioned among rap’s elite. How could anyone justify mentioning him in the same breath as J.Cole, Kendrick Lamar or Big Sean? He’s clearly a great business man but he needs to put more work and effort in on his albums. He is good for a good line, here and there but his lyrics are repetitive and boring. Honestly he is starting to fall into the Lil Wayne box because his content is women and money over hot beats. Luckily for Ross, he’s business sense, marketing sense and superior production keeps him relevant because his lyrics clearly don’t. If you are expecting a stellar, stand out album, prepare to be disappointed with the same ole Rozay. 

Album Overall rating 3/5

~ Phillip Roberts

  

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6 thoughts on “Rick Ross Fails to Grow, For The Eighth Time in a Row: Black Market Album Review”
  1. Ross has made a living from his mafia music style of hip-hop. This album was more reserved from his usual content than his previous releases.This could be due lack of inspiration because he spent the vast majority of his time on house arrest during the creative production of this album and it shows. This album is somewhat of a follow up to his mixtape “Black Dollar” which released about a month prior to the album. With that being said, i think black dollar should have been the album and black market should have been the mixtape. this albums lyrical content proves that an abrupt change to ones environment will have a direct impact on said lyrics. While on house arrest and having no access to any illegal substance and also not being permitted the freedom to come and go as he pleased placed him in a different mind frame and it sounds to me as he lost his focus. The album is still weak and there is not one feature on here that saves his lackluster performance. This formula that he created years ago was working for awhile,but this effort fell short…even for his core fan base. If you want some good Rick Ross tracks listen to any album from “Teflon Don” and prior to it. If you want to hear some Great Rick Ross listen to “Rich Forever”, “The Return of Albert Anastasia” and “Black Bar Mitzvah” which are all free to download mixtapes and exhibit better beats,lyrics and overall presentation. Those mixtapes sound like complete organized projects; unlike “Black Market”.

  2. Great review…keep up the good work…Rick Ross is only good for a couple good songs on each CD..he hasn’t put out a good full body of work in years

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