Chief Keef falls short of expectations

Anushka Kalra, asst. news editor

Chicago native Keith Cozart, better known by his stage name, Chief Keef, recently dropped an album titled Two Zero One Seven, a homage to the new year–although some of the lyrics probably should have stayed in 2016.

The album consists of 17 songs–all of which are excellently produced by the father of trap music, Lex Luger, and Keef himself. I mean, the sound is just incredible. The beats are sick and each song is its own piece of great music. The eccentricity that makes Keef so iconic comes out in full swing.

The album is fully loaded with everything from the trap sounds of “Reefah” to the acid house beats of “Trying Not to Swear.” At times, Keef sounds like a different person as he jumps genres, all the while staying true to the aggressive drill music theme that defined the Chicago hip hop scene.

However, I experienced a lot of deja vu while listening to this album and I kept thinking, ‘Gosh, these lyrics sound awfully familiar…’

I don’t blame Keef. It must be hard to find different ways to talk about getting money, shooting people and hooking up with different women. Keef’s blatant violence seems misplaced in a city full of artists trying to heal it.

Yeah, these new songs are catchy. The combination of Keef’s versatility and the different flavors of music is exhilarating. I would give this album a five-star rating–if I didn’t understand English. The lyrics are just too repetitive to get into. Unfortunately, because Keef is a pillar of the drill music genre–a genre that provides insight into the gang warfare lurking in Chicago’s South Side–he falls into a nearly hour-long broken record. Seventeen songs about the same concept are nothing new.

Keef’s lyrics are out of place in a city that has given us artists like Mick Jenkins, Chance the Rapper and Vic Mensa–all of whom rap about bringing peace to Chicago. He even references that in “Stand Down,” defiantly rapping that although he is “part of them breeds that die, ” he’s here to stay “balling like Caillou.”

If only he would return to his message in “Ain’t Gone Miss You.” Maybe then Keef would not be relegated to the shelves of rappers who fall into obscurity. If he does, it is a loss of a great potential in an artist that must take inspiration from something other than violence.