T.I. has grown to truly be one of his generation’s most captivating speakers. Whether he’s conversing frankly with a room full of youth about the positive side of staying in school and following their dreams, or moving tens of thousands at one of his concerts, the audiences are immediately engrossed by the King of the South’s words. T.I., here delivers his most potent and important LP to date; “Paper Trail.” The title is a direct reference to T.I.’s return to literally writing down his lyrics- a practice he hasn’t engaged in since his debut. By going back to the basics T.I. has evolved into a better MC. The album features guest appearances and production by Lil Wayne. Rihanna, Usher, The Dream, Fall Out Boy, Kanye West, B.O.B, John Legend, DJ Toomp, Swizz Beatz, Drumma Boy, & Danja.
“I’m Illy” – When T.I. burns he’s hot as an inferno. This is the way we’d like him all the time.
“Whatever You Like” – It’s made for radio–it doesn’t matter when its good.
“Ready For Whatever” – “Can’t afford the price of fame/ ’cause it cost to much.” Perhaps T.I. finally realizes that being a hip-hop artist puts a big target on your back and he was hit in the bullseye. The best songs are written when depressed, under stress or in some sort of pain. And T.I. has some serious worries with jail on the horizon.
“On Top of the World” f/Ludacris – T.I. and Ludacris are hot duo. Ludacris hasn’t sounded this fresh in awhile.
“No Matter What” – A different flavor keeps the album fresh. Good to see T.I. mixing it up and doing it in a way that shows his multiple skills.
“Swing Ya Rag” – T.I. again has some new flavor thanks to Swizz Beatz. Then again its got some serious southern fried hip-hop and you know that’s all T.I.
“Swagga Like Us f/Jay-Z, Kanye West and Lil’ Wayne – An all-star party. The digital vocals are the only thing that keeps the song down.
“Live Your Life” f/Rihanna – T.I. never gets off the ground and Rihanna does what she can with what she’s given–which isn’t much. Please someone stop with the digital effects to vocals–its beyond cliche at this point.
“My Life Your Entertainment” f/Usher
“Porn Star” – T.I. couldn’t have believed this was a good song–he probably fell in love with the title and just couldn’t let it go.
T.I. has outdone himself. “Paper Trail” is his best release to date. The good news is T.I. shows that he can get better.
Watch the video for “Whatever You Like”
Watch the video for “No Matter What”