After a series of critically acclaimed mixtapes and well-received awards-show performances, [artist id="2990927"]Wale[/artist] finally dropped his long-awaited debut album Attention Deficit this week. The Washington, D.C.-based MC told MTV News that although his roots like in his hometown's go-go scene, the album is meant to express the energy of the title and the cover artwork (which depicts a kid wearing headphones staring at dozens of television monitors).
"It's supposed to be all over the place," Wale — who performed with his group as the house band at the 2009 Video Music Awards — explained. "It's just like channel surfing: There's no one sound. I couldn't go with one sound."
Of the 14 tracks on Attention Deficit, Wale calls out "Mirrors" — a funky, jazzy, old-school jam with a guest verse from Bun B — as one of his favorites.
" 'Mirrors' is cool to perform," he told MTV News' Tim Kash. "It's about the climate. I'm analyzing the psyche of a lot of people in this business. There's a belief that in order to have success you have to sound a certain way or look a certain way. But a lot of these things aren't real. In the end, you can only perform for the person in the mirror."
Though the release of Attention Deficit has been an uphill struggle at times, Wale is proud of his debut and hopes that his enthusiasm comes through the speakers.
"I think when you put your blood, sweat and tears behind something and keep it honest, I think it always comes out," he says. "It's like a child to me. This album is closer to me than any artist has felt about their debut album. It's so symbolic. We never thought this day was gonna come. It's got a bar code and artwork!"