For mainstream fans of TDE, the only members they know are Kendrick Lamar, SZA and ScHoolboy Q…for real die hard fans, we know Jay Rock is the original member that tried his hand at mainstream success when he dropped his debut album “Follow Me Home” featuring the Lil Wayne assisted single “All My Life”.
After suffering from a motorcycle accident during the 2016 Grammy is that caused serious injury to him, Rock was ready to prove he was back and better than ever and in my opinion he succeeded. Backed by the Black Panther Soundtrack single “King’s Dead” featuring Future and Kendrick Lamar as well as the anthem sounding “Win” was already showcasing that we were going to get a new Jay Rock ready to garner the mainstream success he deserved.
My favorite standout tracks include the Intro, “The Bloodiest”, “For What It’s Worth”, “ES Tales”, “OSOM” featuring J. Cole, “Tap Out” featuring Jeremih, “WOW Freestyle” featuring Kendrick Lamar, and the title track “Redemption” featuring the angelic SZA. On “The Bloodiest”, Jay Rock is off to a great start by delivering some remarkable and fierce tales. On “For What It’s Worth”, Jay Rock contemplate if it is worth it to murder a man while during the last verse talks about hooking up with a woman and if the consequences that came with it and if it was really worth it. ”ES Tales” is a dope storytelling track of what it was like for Jay Rock growing up in his neighborhood.
“Tap Out” featuring Jeremih was a surprising record from Jay Rock because it is definitely radio single quality and aimed towards the women, it is a reach but it may work once serviced to radio. “OSOM” finds Jay Rock speaking about when he got his first label deal with Warner Bros. Records and J. Cole speaking about lessons and things to watch out for including drug use, disloyal friends taking advantage, depression in the vein of his new album “KOD”.
“Wow Freestyle” is another classic Jay Rock/Kendrick Lamar record displaying their lyrical ability. On the title track “Redemption”, SZA delivers another soulful feature while Rock contemplates on things he would have done if he had a second chance to redo them.
Even though Jay Rock stepped out of the box and tried new things on his last album “90059”, it did not really seem like it worked unlke his newest piece of work “Redemption”. On “90059”, it seemed like he was forcing the new Jay Rock whereas on this one it seemed more natural and blended in with the more gritty type of Jay Rock material we have gotten in the past. This new album showcases the growth and versatility with flows and sounds that Jay Rock has fine-tuned since the last album and has allowed Jay Rock to be thrust into “album of the year” talk among the likes of J. Cole, Nipsey Hussle And Royce Da 5’9”.