J Cole Rolls Down Lewis Street With A New Two Piece Combo
The North Carolina lyricist is back releasing music in preparation for his new album 'The Fall Off', due sometime this year. Cole announced the pending release of two new records on Tuesday evening to the excitement of many across the hip-hop sphere. The last we heard of J Cole was a few months earlier with the release of his musical stream of consciousness, 'Snow On The Bluff', which was met with both public support and controversy based on the perspective he took on the record. Cole was referring to a fellow lyricist that he left misspoke about his absence during the BLM protests at its heights on his first release of the year.
The new album has been in the works since the release of his stellar 2018 project KOD. Cole stepped out of his comfort zone slightly while still delivering relatable concepts and high-level lyricism on his 5th studio album. 2019 was arguably an MVP year for Cole, evident in an amazing run of memorable features on both mainstream records and album cuts. This period brought Cole's presence in the hip-hop to a level that we had not seen for years. Revenge III, which has since been certified platinum by RIAA, was also an important factor in this. This brings us to the present day as Cole gives us a taste of what to expect from his upcoming project. The two song project called "Lewis Street", a location that Cole has referenced before may be an indication of J Cole's mindset of reverting to an older version of himself.
The two records released are different sonically but share similar ideas and emotions. The Climb Back delivers a soulful instrumental, produced by J Cole himself. The smooth sample plays throughout the record and a sound bite starts the song by saying "Are you born in this world to facilitate growth, or to become famous", a struggle that J Cole elaborates on throughout this single. The skipping hi-hats and thumping drums add a different element to the record as J Cole starts with a simple melody before beginning his verse. J Cole proceeds to showcase his excellent wordplay, he continues by speaking on the struggles that occur in inner cities with violence, murder, and the urge to drown those thoughts in dark liquor. J Cole also speaks on people's lack of support or attention for Black entertainment award shows and his disdain for rappers with a lower skill set and accolades portraying a false lifestyle that confuses the hip-hop audience. J Cole also makes it a point to speak on the current social climate of 'cancel culture' and gives a nod to a pioneer of drill music Chief Keef.
In the second verse, J Cole speaks on the struggles of the come up with those around you having different ideologies and growth rates. He mentions having a friend that he would try to help but eventually would have to cut ties due to their inability to stand alone.
Listen to the full record below:
The second record 'Lion King On Ice' is a play on J Cole's moniker as 'Young Simba'. Produced by J Cole, T-Minus, and Jetsonmade, this record has a modern feel and heavy bounce as J Cole croons about his ambitions on the hook. J Cole begins his verse by speaking on the daily hustle of trying to make ends meet but also be wary of those around you, because "some won't make it past the summer regardless". Switching his flow, J Cole details situations that many encounter in terms of what they see as success, moving their family to a better environment and getting rich despite years of oppression and enslaved ancestors.
As Cole continues, he refers to his 2018 song 1985, detailing how many in the rap game will come and go. He speaks about his prediction coming to fruition and goes on to let the listener know what it takes to be at his level for so long. J Cole shows us his self-awareness as he raps about people around him wanting him to show off his wealth but he had to stop taking their advice. He finishes his verse by telling the listener to know that he can only fall when he has given everything he can to his listener, physically and mentally.
Listen to Lion King On Ice