Let me start out by saying that I'm a big fan of Common sense. He's one of my favorite emcees and I consider most of his albums classics or near-classics and I eagerly anticipate his releases. This album was no different and although I can't stand The Neptunes I thought their work on "Electric Circus" was pretty good so the fact that Pharell was all over the album only caused a minor concern.
1. Universal Mind Control (UMC) 4/5
I can dig this. I know a lot of people hated on this when it initially dropped but I'm feeling the old school vibe. If he had called it "Planet Rock 2008" I'm sure people would have liked it more
2. Punch Drunk Love 1/5
Awful beat and it sounds like they wrote their verses in a cab on the way to the studio. I expected more from a Common/Kanye collabo
3. Make My Day 3,5/5
Cee-Lo and Common always seem to bring out the best on each other. This is still their weakest collaboration to date
4. Sex 4 Suga 0/5
The worst Common song ever. the beat is hopeless and the lyrics are just straight gay. There is a long way from "The Ligt" to this. Apparently Erykah Badu was a better inspiration than fat assed Serena Williams
5. Announcement 2/5
Another throw away beat and some uninspirational lyrics from Common. It seems like he dumbed his lyrics down a lot for this release.
6. Gladiator 3,5/5
A decent track but far from previous songs like "The Game", "Chi-City" or "The 6th Sense"
7. Changes 2/5
The beat is trash, the lyrics are more acceptable but it's still way beneath what he's capable of
8. Inhale 3/5
Not a bad song but like the rest of the album it's a step back both musically and lyrically.
9. What A World 2/5
I like the beat but once again Common seems to have forgotten his rhyme book at home or has he fallen victim to the idea that not writing your rhymes down make you a good rapper?
10. Everywhere 3,5/5
At least he ends the album on a high note but where the fuck is Pop's rap ??
Overall : 2/5
The main problem with this album isn't even the beats (although they are borderline horrible at times), it's the lyrics that represent a career low for Common. It's very clear that he's trying to cater to the ladies on most songs but if I want a sappy hiphop love song I'll buy an LL Cool J album. Hopefully Common will stop dumbing down his lyrics in 2009 and give the kind of classic albums we know he can deliver. I for one won't be buying this.