Maybe you found it tough to get out of bed this morning, facing the realities of the week ahead after a holiday weekend. Or maybe you just can’t believe that summer has already basically come and gone, and the days are about to get shorter and colder. Or maybe you simply need that extra boost — to finish that assignment or project, to reach that goal, hell, to clean your room — like we all do sometimes.
Lucky for you, Jeezy’s new album, Seen It All, dropped on Tuesday (September 2).
No, the title of his fifth major label effort doesn’t fall in line with the theme that’s been woven in album titles during his career: That Jeezy is the Thug Motivator. But that feeling that you get in your gut when listening to one of his project remains throughout his latest.
Professor Jeezy is a little more experienced, a little wiser and a bit more reflective this time around — something symbolized both in the title of the album and his name change (he dropped the Young, of course) — all while still kicking his seasoned street stories to push you to keep pushing. “Enough,” for instance, is a tale of how all the hard work paid off, and how you can be just like Jeezy “if you grind hard enough.”
“When I listen to a lot of ’Pac’s albums and a lot of his records, it was like then when I listened to ‘em, I loved ‘em because they sounded great and I loved him as an artist and what he represented,” Jeezy told MTV News earlier this summer. “But now I listen to ‘em because it helps me get through my day, because what he was talking about then, applies to me now. So I feel like Seen It All is that for me.”
To deliver that sort of message, Jizzle is probably most associated with rapping over booming, bass-thumping, drum-spattered beats, but he is equally prolific over symphonic soundscapes and R&B-tinged flair — and he hops on all three here.
Songs like the Jay Z-assisted title track, “How I Did It (Perfection)” and “Beautiful,” with Game and Rick Ross, bring a diverse sound that helps breathe life into the album, while cuts like “Me OK” and “Black Eskimo” offer the hardened — and much needed and perfected — trap sound linked with the Def Jam rapper’s lyrical content.
“Been Gettin’ Money” reunites the Atlanta native with his “Soul Survivor” partner Akon, and though the joint is unlikely to recapture the success of their collective breakout, it’s another welcomed reminder of their chemistry (and a great reason to go back and listen to “Soul Survivor,” as if you needed one). On “F–k The World,” Jeezy links with August Alsina for one about the ladies.
“No Tears,” featuring Future, is a nostalgic look back at what it took to make it out. And then there’s “Beez Like,” featuring Lil Boosie, which may be one of the album’s strongest cuts, not only for the collab, but for the rapper’s ability to repackage and relay his story. “I been out here grindin’ so long/ Still I had to find my way on my own/ I can tell you what it beez like,” Jeezy belts on the chorus.
On Seen It All, he tells us just that.