Newest Review: ... an awesome beat that Wiz raps with and you can't help but be drawn to it. The hook is awesome and yet all he is saying is black and yello... more
Roll Away With This One
Rolling Papers - Wiz Khalifa
Member Name: XICripZ
Rolling Papers - Wiz Khalifa
Advantages: Decent singles
Disadvantages: Generally unimpressive
By the time Wiz Khalifa released "Rolling Papers", he was a Rap sensation. His hard work in the underground had payed off and the hard graph he'd gone through in his early days got him to an ideal platform. It was really all thanks to "Black and Yellow", a dedication to his city and the local football team, which managed to catapult his status from being a cult phenomeon that a few people had heard of (via tunes like "Ink My Whole Body" and "Say Yeah") and his independent album, "Deal or No Deal". He was the type of artist who wanted to be heard no matter what, so with such a wide array of people taking interest, he dropped "Rolling Papers" as his major-label debut in 2011 and could take note of how much people received his new musical stance.
It's Wiz Khalifa being Wiz Khalifa. The rapper himself is a very affable character and it comes across in the music. He spends much of his time getting his party on, so it's a great reflection of the 'college' experience and comes across as down-to-earth. He's the sort of rapper you can imagine being a mate, so the record doesn't end up getting too serious or stern. It's a consistently mellow release and his hazy expression projects that. Cuts like "Hopes & Dreams" may not receive any critical praise if they were performed by a lyrically-diverse MC, but coming out the mouth of Wiz, he's perfectly fine to just babble on aimlessly.
The album lacks drive. For a Hip Hop release, it's very flimsy and doesn't really fit in line with his mixtape work prior to this. Although, yes, he does still to his guns and talk about his fascination with weed much of the time, it gets tiresome here. It's not helped by the fact he goesin with proper Pop songs. Since "Black and Yellow" didn't have to go to such lows to get noticed, it's annoying that "Roll Up", "No Sleep" and the majority of the album does. It also means that when strong guests turn out, their presence is just for the novelty appeal and don't really add to the album. So much potential could come of his link-ups with Too $hort, Chevy Woods and Curren$y, but he decides to waste that on dry ideas instead.
All in all, Khalifa finds himself in a dull situation, whereby he has to vocal StarGate beats to gain the audience's interest. Unfortunately, it' a common situation with rapper who have that commericial appeal, whereby they can't help but cheat their way to megabucks, without supplying a valuable body of work. If you're looking for a Rap album of substance, "Rolling Papers" is the complete opposite and - instead - features a rapper singing most of the time over the most watered-down instrumentals he can get his hands on. Fair enough, this might be your cup of tea if you only like the occasionl bit of Rap in your record collection, but even then, you'll be better off looking elsewhere.
Summary: Wiz Khalifah's major-label debut album