Big Sean “I Decided” (Album Review)
Big Sean ‘I Decided’ album review.
As far as current Hip-Hop acts go it’s safe to say that Big Sean is pretty up there in terms of lyrical ability, but he doesn’t always bring his A game. So far very little has topped Hall of Fame and even Dark Sky Paradise was a bit hit and miss, which is why it was so important for Sean to get this one right.
The album opens with a man praying that he had not wasted his life, which sets the tone for the album of Sean’s journey and struggles before easing into life with Light. The keyboard infused track sets the album off on a soothing start with added vocals provided by Jeremih.
From this we burst into the Detroit rapper’s stand out hit, Bounce Back. The dark track provided by Metro Boomin’ suits Sean down to a T allowing his vocals to not be overshadowed by an over produced beat. This is where Sean excels as he knows where his strengths lie, but often he doesn’t use them to the fullest.
The piano keys and synths undercut Sean on No Favors as the album continues to go from strength to strength. Featuring Detroit’s own Eminem Sean does well to hold his own with a strong verse but only to be over-shadowed by Em, but what else did we expect?
Sadly this is where the album declines. Another promising feature was Jhene Aiko (or TWENTY88) on Same Time Pt. 1 but her vocals were under utilized. Despite the hype surrounding Moves the track itself is a little embarrassing. In the words of his GOOD Music President, Pusha T “While every song gotta rapper dance” as he acknowledges that you can make up for a lack of talent with some dance moves. There was no need for another Hotline Bling imitation and it comes across as a desperate plea for internet fame.
However there is yet another twist. Voices In My Head and Inspire Me show a better, methodical side that turn the album on it’s head. Making way for reflective bars Sean looks back on his mistakes and knows what he needed to do to get back to his best and this is the side of the Detroit rapper that should have been shown from track one. Even on Sacrifices featuring Migos Sean comes into his own and sounds at home with the beat.
As a whole the album doesn’t hit the mark as much as his previous work has done, but we all know that Big Sean albums get better with time. We were promised a deeper side of Sean which he fails to deliver until the last and whilst the album is far from awful it is yet another average body of work. Sean works best with harsh, brash beats and clever, quickfire lyrics rather than these stripped back dark beats that he is trying to force. Either that or during slower tracks as he opens up with his inner demons, but sadly the handful of tracks that don’t deliver leave a sour taste.