hmv's Albums of 2014: Lupe Fiasco
Every day throughout January we're going to be previewing 2014's biggest records. Today, we focus on Lupe Fiasco, what kind of new album can we expect from the rapper...
A Little Background...
To anyone familiar with the hip hop scene, Lupe Fiasco needs no introduction, to the wider public though, he's still something of an unknown. Finding fame after remixing Kanye West’s ‘Diamond’s of Sierra Leone’, Lupe has gone on to forge a career as a successful MC in his own right. Over the past 7 years and 4 studio albums, Lupe has become known for addressing social issues such as violence and suicide in his lyrics, as well as his outspoken political views, never following the crowd, all following his own path.
After the delayed release of his critically and commercially successful 3rd album, 2011's Lasers, there was speculation over the release of a Food & Liquor Part II, however just 6 months after it’s release in 2012 came the announcement of Tetsuo & Youth. With such an interesting album name we were hoping there was an amazing story behind it, but alas it doesn’t mean anything - simply just two words he liked.
What It's Called?
Tetsuo & Youth. Like we said.
What Will It Sound Like?
Tetsuo & Youth is set to be unlike any Lupe Fiasco album that’s gone before. Firstly, although not a party album there is no political subtext. This has been a conscious decision by Lupe in an effort to have people judge him based on his musical capabilities and not his political stance, which doesn’t seem too outlandish, after all he is a musician and not a politician. He’s described the album as “ratchet”, no not the tool you use to mend your engine but the word used by Gen Y American’s when describing something as ‘street’. Lupe has elaborated that despite stating the album is ratchet he uses the word in the context of being graphic and that could be a word or a point of view, and that when he uses the term ratchet it’s more situational and less in the context many other people use it (as in to repair a car?).
Who's Producing It? Are There Any Big-Name Guests?
The confirmed features so far have been Rick Ross, Big K.R.I.T and Chris Brown, not to forget label-mate and all round nice guy, our very own Mr Ed Sheeran. Sheeran lends vocals to the lead single ‘Old Skool Love’ which was released in the US on 14th October, peaking at Number 3 on the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 singles chart. A very classic sounding hip hop beat, the signature Lupe Fiasco lyricism, plus Sheeran’s vocal adding a certain depth, the end result being an all round great track.
Will It Really Come Out This Year? And When?
Although no exact date has been set yet, with 98% of the album complete ‘Tetsuo & Youth’ has been tipped for release in early 2014.