To Be Nicki? Or to be Roman? That is the question. Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded comes across like an artist conflicted. While Nicki Minaj has played around with her sound in the past, the result has always maintained an air of Hip-Hop. However, this time around it seems as though Nicki has created Roman to deal with the rap side of things because she herself has set her sights on a new focus: Pop.
The aim of Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded is not a clear one. Between the elementary (and almost comical) braggadocios raps and experimental Pop songs, one has a hard time grasping who Roman is, and more importantly, who Nicki Minaj is. We get it. You started out on the underground mixtape scene, had a surprisingly successful debut era, picked up mainstream attention and endorsement deals along the way. But what does that all really mean when you’re in your late 20′s and delivering punchlines like, “Bite me, apple sign”?
One thing that is clear is the merging of two distinct genres of music: rap and dance/pop. On the rap side of things, Nicki is more at home with cocky lyrics and anonymous disses. Is every line clever? No, but what she lacks in substance, she makes up for with her flow and theatrics. You can’t help but get the feeling that Nicki is only rapping because that’s how she started, and if she stopped, she would face a slew of ridicule. On the flip side, we have the Pop songs which surprisingly are not bad. Nicki embraces this sound with open arms it seems. RedOne, Dr. Luke, and Kane Beatz are the architects for Nicki’s infectious tunes like “Pound the Alarm” and “Whip It” that put her right on par with the likes of Rihanna and Katy Perry.
All in all, the one thing this album lacks is execution. Nicki relies on her predictable one liners and auto-tuned Pop records to carry her. This may be ok for her younger demographic, but for hip-hop fans – the ones who got her to where she is now, this album is severely underwhelming.
Tags: Nicki Minaj, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded