What’s on our iPod: Lupe Fiasco/The Cool

Chicago rapper Lupe Fiasco gets real cool on his latest sophomore release from Atlantic records. Smart rap lyrics and clever beats and hooks help make “The Cool” a completely listenable hip-hop album through and through.

Lupe’s first single from the album, “Superstar” (featuring singer/songwriter Mathew Santos) demapds to be played more than once upon first listening to the record, proving that the rapper once best known for his skateboarding lyrics (“Kick, Push” from “Food & Liquor”) has now found his new sound deserving of rave reviews from critics worldwide.

Rather than relying on the braggadocio found in the most mainstream hip-hop today, Lupe’s raps are more narrative, often telling stories of unnamed characters, as in “Hip Hop Saved My Life.”

Other key tracks include “Dumb it Down,” “Go Go Gadget Flow” and “Gotta Eat.”

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