5Overall Score

cadillactica

Big K.R.I.T. has risen to new heights and landed on a planet all his own with his sophomore album on Def Jam, Cadillactica; a loosely conceptual project that showcases the Mississippi artist’s one of a kind work.

What is quickly becoming his most popular work is also his best quality thus far. It appears that Big K.R.I.T. grew tired of fans and media outlets using his older works as a catalyst for supporting his music. Soon after the release of KRIT Wuz Here in 2010 followed by his appearance on the freshman cover of XXL and what was his biggest “mainstream” buzz in 2011, Krizzle spiraled into a grey area filled with sample hold ups and lack of creative control of his art.

While Big K.R.I.T.’s humble demeanor has always been something to speak of, it may have kept him in an unsure and weary state of creation.

Enter, Cadillactica.

The creation of this intergalactic space for himself has proven worthwhile. Somewhere during the trip through the universe K.R.I.T. lost the overly humble and self conscious weights of the past few years. A complete turnaround from K.R.I.T.’s underwhelming debut album with Def Jam, Live from the Underground, which felt forced and impersonal, Cadillactica encompasses his raw emotion and the allurement of being southern. Simply put, the album is genuinely K.R.I.T. With a complete absence of samples and all but five tracks produced exclusively by the king himself, his one of a kind production ability and out of this world lyricism become the forefront of the project.

As the intro Kreation plays, it is evident that there were no compromises in making this album; “let’s just be perfect” is as much romantic as it is artistic. Along with the following semi-electro, hard hitting track “Life”, the album kicks off by insinuating that instead of foregoing the creative process to accommodate outside expectations, K.R.I.T. took his time, found life and released a project that he feels is perfect. And to be completely honest, it is close to if not sonically perfect.

In case the first two tracks were too introspective or didn’t draw you in with an 808, My Sub Pt. 3 and subsequently the title track Cadillactica (produced by DJ Dahi and DJ Khalil) come in with perfect timing to remind listeners that Krizzle’s quick witted lyricism is still southern to the core and he has no qualms blowing the sub-woofers in your car when necessary. My Sub Pt. 3 cues the instant stank face and basically begs for a remix featuring some southern greats to be made.

With features from singers Raphael Saadiq, Rico Love and Mara Hruby, there is an undertone of romance on the album. From romanticizing the past, an exotic dancer and even a car, this album is dripping in genuine emotion. K.R.I.T. also does his fair share of crooning on this project, namely on “Third Eye” and “Angels” both of which adequately offer an out of body experience while you fall in love, like it or not.

True to his southern form, K.R.I.T. once again joins forces Devin the Dude and Bun B for the track “Mo Betta Cool”, which is imbued with Houston love and greatness. Also featured are E-40, Wiz Khalifa, Lupe Fiasco and A$AP Ferg, all fulfilling their role in complementing K.R.I.T.’s style and purpose for the album. Yet, possibly the best and most surprising feature is found on “Saturdays = Celebration” featuring Jamie N. Commons, a British blues singer. With production help from Alex da Kid, the track is reminiscent of Jesus Walks and Commons’ vocals seamlessly blend with K.R.I.T.’s rapping in a beautifully heavy, Grammy caliber discussion of death.

Most notably, Cadillactica claims that Big K.R.I.T. is indeed king of the south. Between having a track literally named “King of the South” wherein he says “I embody the south, the swangin’ and bangin’. The soul and the pain and the blues” to the reprise of the popular “Mt. Olympus”, there is no arguing that as far as Justin Scott is concerned he is not “coming for the crown” it has already been custom fitted and has his named inscribed on it. His disdain for the happenings of the last few years is evident. Instead of calling out other artists or inciting a temporary beef, K.R.I.T. has simply made his claim, backed it up with a stellar project along with a very successful tour and dared anyone to say he is being untruthful. Cadillactica is one of the best complete, well rounded projects to come out of the south in a very long time, let’s watch and see if anybody comes with the same force and quality to refute Big K.R.I.T.’s claim.