The world belonged to Belcalis Almanzar, other wise known as Cardi B, even if only for a day.
On April 7, Cardi B released her debut studio album titled “Invasion of Privacy.” No other album or artist in 2018 has had so much to prove. With Cardi B’s fan base growing by the day and her fame being held up by her groundbreaking hit “Bodak Yellow,” her future in the music industry seemed to weigh on the success of “Invasion of Privacy.”
I hope every artist who releases an album in 2018 takes notes from Cardi B, who opens her 13-song album with a show stopping opening track called “Get Up 10.” “Get Up 10” consists of a 667 word opening flow where Cardi takes off on a tangent about everything from her fake boobs to her past history with stripping. It’s an impressively catchy flow that captures everything that Cardi B is praised for — her punchlines, her delivery and her personality.
As perfect of an opener as “Get Up 10” is, “Invasion of Privacy” takes a quick dip on the song “Drip” featuring Migos. Cardi B and Migos have proven to be a successful mash up in the past with their track “Motor Sport.” “Drip” however, runs a tad long considering there seems to be no direction or progression throughout the whole song. Along with a lack of musical or lyrical progression, “Drip” feels weighed down by the presence of all three of the members of Migos.
As fast as the album dipped it shot sky high on the track “Bickenhead.” “Bickenhead” heavily samples the 2001 song “Chickenhead” by Project Pat. Out of the nine new songs that “Invasion of Privacy” offers “Bickenhead” is most likely next up for fame. It’s a profanity-loaded female empowerment anthem that spares no face in its three minute run time.
As “Bickenhead” fades out the now unmistakable beat of “Bodak Yellow” kicks in and it is another three minutes of Cardi B proving she’s the new empress of rap.
Sadly after “Bodak Yellow” Cardi tries her hand at a lighter, slower beat on tracks “Be Careful” and “Best Life.” “Be Careful” finds Cardi B staying strong with her lyrics but due to the more mellow beat she’s forced to slow her delivery and the whole track seems overly thought out and it just doesn’t suit Cardi’s usual bombastic delivery. On the track “Best Life” featuring Chance The Rapper, Cardi and Chance find each other on different wavelengths where stylistically Chance is more boppy and loose, his flow seems misplaced within a Cardi project.
On “I Like It” Cardi flaunts her Latin family roots with Bad Bunny and J Balvin aiding in on her party esque track. Bad Bunny contributes the strongest flow, easily out shining J Balvin.
After “I Like It,” the party finally dies down. Cardi’s album takes a bit of a slump with the songs, “Ring” featuring Kehlani and the song “Money Bag.” Both “Ring” and “Money Bag” are the two most skippable tracks off of “Invasion of Privacy,” they are basic from production to their lyrical content. There are a handful of catchy bars on“Money Bag,” but not enough to deserve a whole track when they could have easily been squeezed into another song.
“Invasion of Privacy” finds a strong ending starting with “Bartier Cardi” which at its best is a grimy, fast paced radio hit. At “Bartier Cardi’s” worst it’s a carbon copy of “Bodak Yellow,” it’s similar flow, beat and overall sound is just too much like Bodak to be completely fresh.
YG helps out with the hook on “She Bad,”another upbeat track that finds YG and Cardi B, some of the bloodiest rappers in the game, merging their sounds impeccably well.
To close off “Invasion of Privacy,” Cardi B enlists the queen of 2017, SZA, for the track, “I Do.” SZAs voice surprisingly compliments Cardi’s flow, creating a wonderful pairing of talents. “I Do” finds Cardi B exiting her album as, if not more, confident than she was on “Get Up 10,”
Although “Invasion of Privacy” has it’s duds, it’s a quality album that shows off Cardi B’s best qualities and makes a point that she has nothing to hide. Through 13 songs Cardi takes control of her career, her drama, her money, her relationship and control of her sound. In her own words “My little 15 minutes lasting long as hell, huh?”
Colton Newman is the photo editor and a music writer for the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @Coltonperson.