Iggy Azalea’s ‘New Classic’ big on beats, lame on lyricism

The Australian-born MC Iggy Azalea uses her music to redefine women’s roles in hip-hop, though it is regressive at times.  (Photo provided by nylonmag.com)
The Australian-born MC Iggy Azalea uses her music to redefine women’s roles in hip-hop, though it is regressive at times. (Photo provided by nylonmag.com)

“The New Classic” has an excellent mix of 15 songs and sounds.  There are at least two to three songs that will most likely be summer hits, including the already-popular “Work,” “Fancy” and a personal favorite though unrecognized “Black Widow.”

Azalea has successfully made a collaboration between electronic dance music and rap, two popular music genres in 2014.  This is a wise move, as it will appeal to a large audience. There’s a mix of songs that would make perfect club tunes and also some that are straight raps.

While Azalea has shown a great command of language and metaphor in the past, some of her new songs are lyrically disappointing.  You would think that Azalea would rather empower herself and women while keeping it “classic” as she calls herself instead of referring to herself as his “new bitch,” in her song.  Azalea creates juxtaposition by talking about being fancy and classic though she actually has a trashy inflection in her voice, which she does intentionally to show that she knows the underprivileged life.

Azalea’s music makes you think of other musicians when you listen. She uses lyrics reminiscent of Drake, Kanye West and Jay-Z just to name a few, and her exaggerated voice sound a bit like Kesha’s.

Songs on this album are disappointing because Azalea’s previous work has been more creative. Instead of singing about something taboo or different, she talks about making it big and rising from a poor world to a rich one. Seems like this story is overdone; she spits the same rhyme in two separate songs “no money, no family, 16 in the middle of Miami.”

In “Impossible is Nothing,” Azalea tells her audience “I remember being exactly like you, young girl,” and  “you can do it too, young man.” While these messages might be inspiring, Azalea is still very young at only 23 years old. It isn’t hard for her to remember being a young girl because she still is one.

“Black Widow” stands out as the best song on the album because the lyrics compliment the sound of the song, giving the listener images of spiders with a creeping feeling. The beat is so catchy that it would make anyone want to move their body. This rap in particular speaks to an audience finding themselves in a relationship that became physical. She talks about feeling stupid, which is something all people can relate to. It even helps to know that a woman as beautiful and strong as her can feel stupid at times. The vocals by Rita Ora make the song as catchy as it is, which goes for all the other artists featured in this album. Without the singers that compliment a great deal of her songs, this album would not be a success.

“Lady Patra” will have people grooving as well. The best part of this song is the reggae influence, a strong allusion to the Jamaican artist known as Lady Patra.  This song has a different sound than the others, one that mixes up the genres.

Azalea hasn’t been in the rap game long enough to refer to herself as a “goddess” as she does in the song. Artists who refer to themselves so highly should at least have wide recognition and have already completed many albums.  Azalea should bite her tongue rather than tell her listeners to bow down to a goddess. She also refers to herself as a living god.

All in all, most songs on this album will make listeners want to bounce, dance and sing along,  though lyrically the dialogue is not new or intriguing.

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