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Review: ‘Queen’ is finally here!

This album is a work of art. It is artistic and experimental and all Nicki.

Ojanae Marshall

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Yesterday was finally the day!!

After what seemed like forever, Nicki Minaj’s fourth highly anticipated album, Queen dropped! It is everything that she promised and more!! While it was heartbreaking and agonizing to wait for it, it was well worth it!! She has changed so much in the four years since “The Pinkprint” and it has shown in the music. Only being out 24 hrs, “Queen” has broken records, being the first female rap album to be #1 on iTunes in 83 countries. The people missing Nicki and it shows.

The first song on the album is “Ganja Burns.” For Nicki Minaj her intro songs are always amazing and “Ganja Burns” is no different. Fans get a taste of the real rap bars to come but Nicki still gives vocals. The beat is soft and gives Caribbean vibes. It’s a soft listen and Nicki Minaj uses the beat to say everything she wants to say.

The next song is “Majesty” ft. Eminem and Labrinth. This song is a repeat of the chemistry on Roman’s Revenge. This time, however, Eminem came prepared for Nicki’s powerful bar and gave the fans real Slim Shady feels with his fast mind spinning bars. The song is a powerful battle between rap heavyweights.

Then comes “Barbie Dreams.” This song is already a favorite on the album. For me as a fan, I nearly hit the floor when I heard the beat come on. It was clear that Nicki heard people when they asked for mixtape Nicki. She sampled “Dreams” by the Notorious B.I.G. On the track she reused her idea from her remix of the song from her mixtape days. She joked about current rappers and celebrities and why she would never sleep with them! With lines like “had to cancel Dj Khaled, we ain’t speaking, ain’t no fat dude, telling me what he ain’t eating.”  It was a playful song that also showcased her writing skills. What really makes Barbie Dreams, the one is what happens at 3:14. Here the song comes back with a different beat and with Roman, a fan favorite alter ego. Here Roman spits fire and gives the fans exactly what fans have been looking for.

Next is the already “Rich Sex” featuring Lil Wayne. “Rich Sex” is a fun song reminding woman that they are worth a man who can take care of them. It is also a fun song, where Nicki and Wayne play around and that can be heard in the bars the spit.

Number 5 is “Hard White.” The beat of “Hard White” tells the listener that Nicki will deliver straight hardcore hip-hop bars and she really truly delivers. With lines like “I bust shots, don’t duck if it doesn’t apply” or  “you got bars and still broke, you might as well took a plea.” Nicki reminds people that her pen is undefeated.

Bed” featuring Arian Grande is next. Bed is a cute song and video. It is another fun song that was previously released. I love the song and love Nicki’s verses and Ariana’s vocals. Anything with the two of them together is always fun and full of love.

Thought I Knew You” featuring The Weekend is next up. I love this song. The last time Nicki and the Weekend collaborating was on The Weekend’s “The Hills Remix.” That song was a hit so I was expecting another from the duo. And they delivered. Nicki rapped and sung. I wished she had rapped more but still, it’s an amazing song.

Then “Run and Hide” comes along to say hello. The beat is simple so Nicki’s vocals and bars are the main focal point. While the beat is simple it is amazing, it keeps the listener bopping their head while listening to Nicki rap about relationship woes and trust issues.

Up next is “Chun Swae.” The featured artist’s name is in the song title, the song features Swae Lee, one half of the group Rae Sremmurd. The song is on the longer side but with Swae Lee on the chorus, the listener doesn’t notice. His chorus along with the beat seems to put the listener in a trance. Nicki comes with bars, she reminds that she’s the Queen and her reign is nowhere from being over, with lines like “my winning streak still hasn’t peaker, you little dustball” and “you’re in the middle of Queen, thinking I see why she calls this shit Queen, this bitch is really the freaking Queen.”

The freestyle turned hit “Chun-Li” is next. If you didn’t know Chun-Li was a freestyle that was finished just 3 days before it released. It was only supposed to a song to satisfy fans while they waited for the album but the song took off and rightfully earned a spot of this iconic album. The beat, Nicki’s bars and flow, everything about this song is perfect.

Number 11 is “LLC.” Personally, this song is just PERFECT!! Nicki was spitting bars and being shady all at the same! The song title alone told fans that Nicki was gonna come to hurt feelings. LLC means Limited Liability Corporation. Nicki is telling everyone she is making them businesses. She’s telling these record labels that the could never make another her. She also reminds them that she writes and that the love she gets is genuine. “We don’t pay dudes to say the like my stuff and we don’t pay dudes to come in and write my stuff,” she says.

Number 12 is “Good Form.” This song has only been out 24 hrs and already there is a Good Form Challenge. That’s because the beat alone makes a person want to get up and dance add-on Nicki’s wordplay and metaphors and it is a hit!! She rides the beat effortlessly! With lines like “I make him eat the cookie cause it’s good for(em)” which is a play on the song title. Nicki came to deliver! This song has been highly waited for by Nicki fans who dubbed it the Benz song since it was sampled for her Mercedes Benz commerical.

Number 13 give us “Nip Tuck.” Nip Tuck is another song that gives us both bars and vocals from Nicki. This song is something fans were hoping was on the album. Nicki psoted a short video of the chrus on social media months back and since then fans have been waiting for it. This is another relationship song and the vibe is super laid back and just lets the listener just vibe along.

Next up is the “2 Lit 2 Late Interlude.” This song is less than a minute long but fans want it to be longer and rightfully so. The beat is infectious and Nicki sounds amazing on it. It’s a simple song has anyone listening bopping and dancing whatever they are.

Come See About Me” holds the 15th spot. This song is only vocals from Ms. Minaj. Once again she is talking about a relationship and an ex-lover that the listener doesn’t know but that isn’t needed to feel the emotion of the song. Her vocals and the production of the song are so on point the listener can’t help but to join her in this land of pain and wishful thinking. It reminded me of “Grand Piano” off of her album “The Pinkprint.”

Since Nicki and Future are going on tour together, it was expected that they would have a song together on her album. That song is “Sir,” which is number 16. The beat catches the listener’s ear and then Nicki and Future come on flowing using the word sir in different ways with every line. It is a great song. I was surprised to love it as much as I did cause I am not a bing Future fan but it defiently a song to blast in the car.

Number 17 gives us “Miami.” It is a fun song where Ms. Minaj flows effortlessly. I love it! She is spitting straight bars. She says things like “you can call Barbiearbie, cause I look like just like a dolly” and “I pit opponents, it look easy don’t it.” She uses this song to remind people that her flow is lethal.

Coco Chanel,” is number 18 and it features Rap Legend Foxy Brown. This collab has been long awaited by the rap world. Nicki had hoped to have it on “The Pinkprint” but it included Remy Ma then and Remy said no but it was worth the wait. This song pays homage to both women’s Trinidadian heritage. Both women come with top-tier bars and it is amazing. This collab is the first female rapper collab Nicki has had on an album and she picked the perfect one. Nicki and Foxy feed off of each other! The Queen of Queens and the King of Brooklyn give the fans exactly what they wanted and needed.

The last song to wrap up this album is “Inspirations Outro.” Nicki uses the beat from “Coco Chanel” to list her inspirations from Mavado to Lauryn Hill.

This album is a work of art. It is artistic and experimental and all Nicki. Fans asked for old Nicki and Nicki gave us old Nicki merged with where she is in her life to give us a whole new beast. This album solidified her space as the greatest female rapper of all time, and one of the top rappers of all time. She gave the fans hardcore hip-hop while doing what she loves. The album had a flow it to tell a story it’s not just a bunch of songs made for radio thrown together. Nicki took her time to better her already magnificent pen and created a masterpiece that everyone loves. I don’t have a top five yet and I don’t know if I ever will, everyone song is amazing. I give the album a 10/10. Everyone from Rappers to Reality stars to Bloggers is giving Nicki her props. She deserves them! Congrats, Nicki!

If you obsess over singers and bands, and are one of those people who make a playlist for every occasion, join CMN’s Music Journalism Course and get real-time experience, intense feedback on your writing, exposure to music industry insiders, and a great place to display build your portfolio. Get all the details on the Music Journalism Course here.

My name is Ojanae Marshall. I am a rising senior at Montclair State University. I am majoring in Religion with a minor in Psychology. I have been writing all my life, I love it. I started getting published as a writer for Sex etc. a sexual education magazine and continued my career from there. I am excited to be apart of CMN. When I am not writing or in school, I am a full-time infant teacher at a daycare. I love working with the babies, it makes me extremely happy. In my free time, I love Netflix and music for which I have eclectic taste. I am also ready to learn and laugh.

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