Nipsey Hussle released his debut album “Victory Lap” on February 16th. The album covers a margin of West Coast Gangsta rap with features from Puff Daddy, Dom Kennedy, YG, and Kendrick Lamar.
Nipsey Hussle has been in the game for a long time now. Since 2010, he has released multiple mixtapes like “The Marathon,” “The Marathon Continues” and “Crenshaw.” Since then, he has still been collaborating with YG, Dom Kennedy and DJ Mustard. He was also famously on the track “FDT (Fuck Donald Trump)” with YG off his album “Still Brazy” in 2016.
“Victory Lap” consists of 16 tracks that’s only an hour long. The album is currently fourth in the country, 153,000 sales in the first week. Throughout the album, Nipsey raps about his past, him in the threshold of gangs in South Los Angeles, and his motivation for fame. Hearing it in his voice is that he is ready to compete and wanting to show more people what he’s capable of.
“Rap N****s” is the second track off the album, and the first single Nipsey released a while ago. Nipsey tells us viewers that he is nothing compared to the other rappers and is a brand of his own. “The Last Time I Checc’d” with YG both flow on how they are both striving in the rap game. This track does have a club style beat they are both prone too, and as always, representing the West Coast. Lastly, there was the albums most well known track “Dedication” with fellow Compton rapper Kendrick Lamar. This track was also one of the singles Nipsey put out before the album. Not like we have heard it before, but Kendrick and Nipsey both rap about how they got off the streets and into this industry.
One aspect of Nipsey Hussle is that he doesn’t really switch up in his raps. He does happen to stay at his own flow a lot, keeping it the same. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, especially for artists who will progress over time. One thing that Nipsey does well is that he keeps his momentum going. Hearing it in his voice, it may be the same tone, but listening to how aggressive he is in his raps and how much he means it.
Look at “Grinding All My Life” for example: Just a few bars into his first verse, he says, “I don’t know a n****a like myself, I say self-made meanin’ I designed myself.” The confident that Nipsey has in his rhymes is not surprising coming from a seasoned veteran like himself. “Grindin All My Life” is a track where Nipsey expresses that he “wants a slice” of fame.
Nipsey provides great detail in this album. He can really show what he is made of which can surprise people. “Victory Lap” is an album that is a decade into the making and is expected coming from Nipsey. No doubt that Nipsey Hussle continues to grind, continues to make music and become the best rapper he can be. “Victory Lap” is an album that shows us what work he has put in and what is expected to come next. But this album is just the beginning for what’s to come in Nipsey Hussle.
Gabe Carlos is a college student in Sacramento, CA. He is a Communications major and aims to be in the field of Sports Broadcasting.