This Robot Can Move

It’s been said. I didn’t want to believe it then. But let’s just admit it. The Carter III can’t possibly live up to expectations. And for those of you just joining us, I am speaking as a fan. If Wayne is/was not the best rapper alive he’s certainly proven to be the most effective. Dude is pretty much single handedly responsible for anyone under the age of 17 still caring about rap (in form, not fashion). And suddenly he seems to be the indifferent one.

The songs that have been allegedly leaking from Carter III have been entirely uneventful. Sure the T-Pain-on-quaaludes single “Lollipop” is the easy target here, but I’m more concerned with the leaked tracks he has been rapping on – namely “Lisa Marie” and “A Milli.” It’s not that the rapping is bad, per se. It’s just a far cry from what he’s capable of. Last year Young Fennessey compiled dudes 77 best verses from ’07. I’d be hard pressed to come up with 8 from the last four months. He’s been riding auto tune auto pilot, getting outshined by his weed carriers and clones, and generally phoning in his verses. Wayne has always spit punchlines but only recently has he been reduced to just a punchline rapper. Where is the emotional intensity of “Trouble” or the sheer technical madness of “Maneater”? And it doesn’t help that most of the production he’s been rapping over is just completely generic. The kind of Motif preset moves that myspace beatsmiths submit for in videos. Wasn’t Kanye supposed to be exec. producing this album? Say what you will about that guy, but he definitely knows a thing or two about individuality of production.

This burn out is not unexpected, few great rappers make it beyond a couple years of greatness. And if you count his unfairly underrated early days at Cash Money (which you probably should), Wayne’s been pretty great for a lot longer than that. It just would be a shame if his renaissance was left intangible and albumless. Then again, we may have reached the point where great rappers are not allowed to release albums at all. So Wayne actually remains on the cutting edge by not releasing a masterful album. The same way I’m ahead of the curve in predicting the whimsical blogger backlash yet to come. Ya dig?

Recommended for You

Around the Web

Best of XXL



  • bbbones

    what about GOSSIP

  • JDizzel3000

    Man i dont know what the hell people are really expecting from this dude he’s never delivered a classic album the past two cater albums were vastly overrated to me his most cohessive album was 500 degrees and that was 5 years ago i was never expecting a classic album from wayne…and i dont know why anyone else is he’s dropped what 5 6 albums and none of the shits was bangin from end to end so why would you think he’s comin with on now?

    • noz

      “he’s never delivered a classic album the past two cater albums were vastly overrated to me his most cohessive album was 500 degrees”

      Agreed. That or “Block Is Hot.”

      Bones – “Gossip” is like six months old and not all that great.

      • Tray

        The first Carter was fairly cohesive…

  • greatest ebay auction ever??

    i know heads on this site can appreciate this right here

    if a member wins it, then they get an EXTRA bonus on top of all that

  • Trey Stone

    i am skeptical about it, but while i kinda see where you’re coming from with the Casio-keyboard criticism i disagree about the production on the three leaks (dunno if “Lisa Marie’s” gonna be on there) being generic. the beats all have an appealing slightly off-kilter vibe that i can see making this a good “different”-sounding rap album if his producers pull it off through the whole thing, without it ending up a “Love Below”-style semi-eclectimess.

  • bding7

    “most of the production he’s been rapping over is just completely generic”

    A Milli gives me an incredible headache, both the beat and the rapping.

    “The same way I’m ahead of the curve in predicting the whimsical blogger backlash yet to come”

    seems I am soon going to need to find a new hobby.

    • noz

      “seems I am soon going to need to find a new hobby.”


  • Incilin

    “Then again, we may have reached the point where great rappers are not allowed to release albums at all.”

    ^^^ Pretty true.

    “So Wayne actually remains on the cutting edge by not releasing a masterful album.”

    WTF does that even mean? That’s just stupid. It’s like your just finding a way to say Wayne is dope, even if it hardly makes any sense.

    • Colron

      The first part which I think you agreed with means that Saigon hasn’t released an album yet and that Joell Ortiz got dropped from Aftermath. Right now some good rap is not seeing the light of day.

      The part you have beef with is saying that just by delaying this album, he keeps the attention on him and that gives him breathing room to create better music..cutting edge tactics. Maybe more important than being good on dropped tracks or even the finished album…if sales are your goal.

  • TOOPair

    when i really think about how much hype has surrounded a rapper (NOT lyricist, mind you), i can’t help but think about jay-z and how he didn’t really get the after effect of fanfare first.

    I remember the days when people actually care about music and really wanted to pay for it. But not it’s almost as fake as reality TV, where the same people that are stealing the music are also dissin the same product that they set out to steal!!

    it’s kinda funny, stealin’ liver that LOOKS like steak, but in the end, it’s just liver!!!

    weezy got the hype machine on early, waaay early, but he is still relevant, or we wouldn’t be talkin about him. If they ain’t hatin’, start worryin’ then!

  • Rizob

    i understand your concern, but i just gotta believe the guy who made “I’m Me” ,”Love Me or Hate Me”, “Trouble”, and “One Night Only” got something up his sleeve. i also refuse to believe that “A Milli” is gonna make the final cut, its just extra regular for (Wayne standards).

    He put himself in a good position wit “Lolipop”, love it or hate it, that record is a monster that just keeps getting hotter. Carter III is still gonna be Carter III.

  • Rizob

    i gotta question tho, wassup wit “Dedication 3″ somebody let me kno that ASAP!

  • Pierzy

    Carter II was aight but it can’t even COMPARE to Ready To Die, Makaveli, Illmatic, Blueprint, Paid In Full, By Any Means Necessary so how is this dude the Greatest Rapper Alive? Just because he said it? Maybe he’ll fool us all and come out with CARTER 4 and make it hott. Then again, I doubt it. In the meantime, I’m going to go back to listening to Cuban Linx, Liquid Swords and The Chronic.

  • dv

    Wayne said in a recent interview that Kanye has sent him a couple beat CDs but he’s only going to use 4 to 5 tracks. I guess the rest of the ‘Ye beats wouldn’t sound good with Weezy guitar “solos” over them.

    I think you’re right about the blogger backlash. Sasha Frere Jones throwing Carter 3 on his 2007 Best of… list was embarrassing.

  • Domjel

    Wayne can’t his head out the clouds long enough to diversify his albums content. Cash money dropped the ball by letting so many hits get out. Imagine if Graduation was without Stronger, Cant tell me nothing or Good life?

  • jason

    I dig.

  • Dre

    I feel the same way Gooch…

    Me and eskay talked about this in IM months ago around Drought Is Over 4. It was ok but it wasn’t Drought Is Over 2 a.k.a. Carter 3 Sessions. Wayne’s been steadily falling off since.

    People who missed the train are gonna go back and try to listen to Carter II to try to see what the hype is and be like “WTF omg people are so dumb”… like the idiot three posts above.

    Nobody’s saying Carter II>Ready To Die,Illmatic,Paid In Full,etc. Nobody ever said Wayne was the greatest back then. Nobody.

    I didn’t play it a year later. But I still bump C3 Sessions / Da Drought 3 occasionally. I’m gonna start playing it even more now that the one year anniversary of when the full DD3 leaked was just yesterday and for C3 Sessions is in June.

    Wayne ain’t brainwash nobody. When we said Weezy was the greatest it was off the strength of 2007 Weezy. That VIBE list is a pretty good snapshot of ’07 Weezy.

    C3 Sessions / Drought 3 really was his peak. I’d love to be surprised by Carter 3 but I’m losing hope. Real shame.

  • Sinistah aka 7Body Sin

    no its just that smoke-screen is clearing and alot of people are realizing that just because food is forced, doesn’t make it good for you!

  • P-Matik

    Lil Wayne is just an average rapper. I’ve heard him spit some real sh*t but mostly he’s just average. Stop painting this dude as someone who is keeping the game alive. Yeah he’s on eveyone and they momma’s joint but that doesn’t make him some lyrical beast.

  • avenger xl

    Thank you P-Matik

    Wayne has a good cadence and a interesting voice and if you look at the true art form of rap as party music wayne is truely one of the greatest party emcees. He could probably really rock a party even though most of his concerts stink like many rap concerts today. You know walk around grab your nuts and scream incoherent lyrics at the crowd who are there more for the celebraty than to be entertained. But wayne is the greatest marketing machine science mike Jones who Mike Jones. He has a viral fanbase it is cool to like wayne and wack to hate on him. But when you brake down his bars even on the little thought provoking stuff he has done over the years he pans out as a great party emcee and not just greatest. Like I said it not that he ain’t great at what he does but he is missing a few pieces to being in the league with a Jigga or Nas.

  • EffYou

    Wayne’s flow is getting more and more lazy..The fans are on his nuts so hard that he feels like ANYTHING he does,people will love it..And he’s damn near right,cuz instead of them saying “Yo that song is wack” They’ll try to break down WHY he made it..Like “He made it for the clubs”,or “he made it for the bitches” I bet if it was MC hammer who made or said some of the shit wayne be spittin sometimes,everybody would say it’s trash..U can’t call yourself the best rapper alive,and come out with an R&B song for ya single..He’s under a whole lot of pressure right now,thats why he keeps pushin his album back..We’ll see if he can really handle it


    This is all hype. It has us talking about whether or not it’ll be good.

    Real shit: go to Myspace (nolo) and just search music. As in, just search for artists. No name, just artists. Lil’ Wayne is waaaay up there. Check the numbers. Usually, I’d say Myspace friends and/or plays don’t mean shit. But when you’re competing with McDonald’s for customers served, even if your product is in free form, you’re pretty damn popular. White kids are all over this.

    Sure enough, it’s all out of whack with what the old guard assumes is the only way to properly deliver an album, but who’s to say that, at this point, Wayne couldn’t drop a shit album and not sell like crazy? That Farter Carter III album is going to sell regardless, mark my turds.


  • A-Town

    Weezy might be tha most polarizing mc ever. people either like him and think he’s one of the best, or absolutely hate him and think he’s trash. there’s no middle ground. and if you like weezy and some haters try to say he’s trash, you could just brush it off cuz you know what he’s capable of. but w/ tha shit that he’s been putin out recently, its gettin harder and harder to back Wayne.

  • ANU

    I think you miss something about the production of “a millie”.
    You said once that production for rap has to be an exercise in minimalism. Well I think that bangladesh did it exactly, basing his beat on a one-word-vocal-sample.
    One of the most creative beat wayne ever rocked.

    • Big Dick Cheney

      I’m not a Lil Wayne fan but i honestly like the way “A MILLI” starts off then it goes down hill from there. If he would have ripped the song, all of you would have been saying thats a great beat. But he came weak and it doesn’t show how great the song can be.

  • Dr Flav

    “Stop painting this dude as someone who is keeping the game alive. Yeah he’s on eveyone and they momma’s joint but that doesn’t make him some lyrical beast.” I was just gonna sign off and leave, but before I did I just had to quote that for the sheer contradictary rhetoric presented. Wayne verse on Rick Ross album was straight fire, either you got to give it to the dude for his skill or he gonna take it and the magnified small group of online rap critics will just have to suck sour grapes. On another note, what up NOz, I still read your Bol, and Sunday’s drops, but am rarely at a desktop PC and somehow I can no longer submit comments from my phone, good to see you guys still keeping the site alive, since its nothing but blogs audio and video at this point. Keep it up holla.

  • HNIC

    Lil’ Wayne has been on overdrive for the past couple of years with the sheer volume of material that he’s released in a relatively short period of time. I might be in the minority with this opinion, on this website, but I still believe that he’s capable of releasing some more compelling, even dare I say, profound shit. He is the consummate MCs’ MC. People don’t realize that he’s adopted the same rhyming style that Biggie & Jigga utilized, meaning that he raps completely freestyle; straight from the dome. Which is an incredible feat considering his admitted use of narcotics; namely weed & syrup.

    Just think of the potential material that he could produce if he weren’t under the influence, gave himself some time to collect his thoughts & simply focused. With the right production & topic selections, it would be incredible! Under those circumstances, I’m certain that he’d produce the classic album that all of his naysayers have been holding over his head, as the primary reason for him not reaching the same status of Jay-Z, Biggie, 2Pac, Nas & whomever else you would include on your top 10 Hip Hop Artist list.

    Granted, some of his recent work hasn’t held the same acclaim as his previous contributions, but I’m sure that’s due to his insatiable need to constantly stay in the studio, producing track after track, meanwhile losing sleep & being on a drug induced permanent high. Not everything is gonna be stellar material. More often than not, you’ll produce some throw away material. So, presumably, some of his tracks that have been leaked recently might not have been meant to ever see the light of day or at least without receiving some revamping first… at least I would hope that’s the case.

    • jimmyjoints

      weed…narcotics? lol. syrup is proven to kill a motherfucker, but weed has been a musician’s performance enhancing drug since forever, man.

  • gbj

    this lil bitch ass, birdman kissin & fuckin ass, never had any fire 2 deliver on any album. this dude had a ghost writter 2 sell a decent amount of albums & do decent freestyles. truth of the matter is: he’s the most overrated rapper alive, tryin 2 bite of of jay-z.