Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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  • Thank Me Later [Universal/Motown, 2010] B+
  • Take Care [Cash Money/Universal Republic, 2011] **
  • If You're Reading This It's Too Late [Cash Money, 2015] ***

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Consumer Guide Reviews:

Thank Me Later [Universal/Motown, 2010]
Neither thug nor thug wannabe, he's plenty talented, but pretty shallow and without much focus as a mack. That's why his very first official album, pleasing and hookful though it be, consistently bemoans the confusing emoluments and accoutrements of fame. Given his limitations, his famous friends are a mixed benefit, because they show him up. Weezy schools him with wheezy jokes from jail. Nicki Minaj's nasty mouth comes as a turn-on. And Jay-Z's 16 takes up the self-doubt theme not to explore that narrow seam of his expanded consciousness but to show the young man how it's done: "And since no good deed go unpunished/I'm not as cool with niggaz as I once was/I once was cool as the Fonz was/But these bright lights turned me to a monster." B+

Take Care [Cash Money/Universal Republic, 2011]
Musical docudrama proves conclusively that having too much money is bad for you, so how come no one gets the point? ("Make Me Proud," "Headlines") **

If You're Reading This It's Too Late [Cash Money, 2015]
So articulate, so intelligent, so (relatively) decent--so how come I perk up when Lil Wayne comes on with his pottymouth absurdities? ("Used To," "Legend") ***