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Introspection Turned Outward
Posted January 02, 2016
By DwayneLacy_NRT, Staff Reviewer


Dre Murray is the quintessential emcee who has set the standard while defying stereotypes for southern rappers. Some believe that rappers from the south usually do not wax poetic, but mostly "turn up." Insert new album, 34. In terms of his use of metaphors and double meanings with the southern drawl, his repping the south has not changed. Sonically and musically, it is a change from Gold Rush: Maybe One Day, which raised the standard in Christian Hip Hop. 

A little psychedelic beat flowing into a slowed down, hard hitting beat is the backdrop of the hook for "DWB," featuring David James. Tragic Hero worked with Dre to drop some heat on Tragic's album My Own Worst Enemy in the form of the clever "1984." I was not expecting a sequel of sorts, but "1989 (Taylor Swift)" is just that. The chorus is an ill and out the box way of telling a story of cocaine use in Houston Texas during that year: "1989 had Taylor Swift in my city (x2) / That's all white with no fight / they like gas like all night." Stay tuned for the interview that I did with Dre for further explanation of why he chose the association.

Another difference in the album is that it is more autobiographical in nature as he speaks to a very sobering moment of two daughters who are growing up quickly in "Play Me At 
Your Wedding
." He also speaks of his hopes of them being with the right man when that time comes for marriage. "Paintriot" is Dre's insecurity of wondering if some black people will question his addressing issues that affect the black race since he is married to a woman who is not black. 

Closing Thoughts:
Lyrically this album is incredibly strong, but something seems to be missing. Maybe I was just expecting more than 10 songs, or maybe there could have been more variation in beat tempo. There is still plenty to chew on, and you have to respect his look at life now that he is 34 years old. He is still one of the best out there. 

Song to Download Now: 
"1989 (Taylor Swift)" (Get it on iTunes here.)

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