Rick Ross, God Forgives, I Don't
* * * (out of four) RAP
Nobody works more tirelessly at building his hip-hop empire than Ross, who now has pumped out five solo albums in six years, done countless features for other artists, plus put out mixtapes and a couple of compilations with his Maybach Music roster.
MTV's reigning "hottest MC in the game" isn't bashful about his artistic and entrepreneurial success, though you're never sure where reality ends and hyperbole begins in his platinum-plated boasts. What is certain, though, is his knack for painting pictures of his bootstraps rise and current luxe life in bold strokes over beats to match. Ross, who delayed this latest opus after suffering a pair of seizures last October, continues to push the envelope on self-aggrandizement.
One of his many star-studded tracks, 3 Kings, features Jay-Z and Dr. Dre (is he really there already?), but he's brazen enough to pull it off. Andre 3000 makes an always-welcome appearance on the soul-fueled Sixteen. Ross also gets plenty of help from Maybach labelmates Wale, Stalley, Omarian and Meek Mill, plus Drake, Ne-Yo and Usher. The stars are big; the Boss' aspirations are bigger.
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