King Push, a persona he bestowed upon himself, is probably one of my favourite rappers. A flow and a sound that harks back to the golden era of hip-hop along with punchlines that hit so hard they could knock out Ali in his prime. This is the first album to come from Kanye's Wyoming residence, something that has seen him make two albums of his own and produce 3 others. This is the first of that work overload to be released and what a way to start the series.
The album opens with "If You Know You Know" the title reminds me of Biggie for some reason, must be that line from "Juicy". Nonetheless, this is Pusha in his prime and this song is just the start of it, with a flow better than anything I've heard in the past 5-10 years. This carries on throughout the rest of the album and it's just so clear that this thing has a Yeezy stamp on it with the wild synths and the obscure samples that work so perfectly well mixed into rap anthems.
And that is something I feel that Pusha T has always been missing, rap anthems, I know that it's not necessary and it's something that nearly imploded J. Cole's career before it had even started. But this album has seven of them and I can't help but feel that it has something to do with the phenomenal production. Not to take anything away from the man himself though because he raps for his life on this, wittier and punchier than ever demonstrating exactly why he's been one of my top 5 for a while now. I'm a big fan of "Infrared" as well, hip-hop is missing that tenseness which makes it so alluring in the first place, seeing rappers going for each other with actual name-dropping disses is perfect.
That's not to say it doesn't have its faults though, "Santeria" is probably my least favourite song on the project and I'm starting to find myself skipping it with every listen because I just feel that it's getting old already and I can't see that song ageing well at all. And with only 7 songs on a project you have no room for filler. I'm a fan of the features too whether that be Rick Ross, G.O.O.D. Music signees or Kanye himself. This album is straight fire. Album of the year? Possibly.