Tory Lanez – “Chixtape 5” Album Review

Story posted November 20, 2019 in Arts & Entertainment, CommRadio by Connor Trask

Coming off a 2018 with two full-length studio releases, multiple single releases and many guest features, Tory Lanez is back and staying busy per usual. Despite a few single releases and an EP, this is Lanez’s first major release of 2019 and a follow up to his “Chixtape” line of mixtapes; the first to be released since “Chixtape 4” in 2017.

In an R&B genre that has been lacking major standouts as 2019 comes to a close, to the point where Jacquees has grotesquely declared himself the “King of R&B.”

“Chixtape 5” is a refreshing release. It is not a groundbreaking release and probably will not go down as a classic, but it is Lanez’s best work as of recent and provides some headline hits the genre has been missing.

This is the first of the series to hit streaming platforms, as the name suggests the prior projects have all been released as mixtapes with digital downloads. It is up for debate whether “Chixtape 5” is the best of the bunch or not, but it is certainly the most consumable and most complete project so far.

The project is stylized as a 2000s throwback tape, reflected by the track list and choice of features along with the cover art that stars Ashanti. The track list is littered with features from other stars from the previous decade and beats sampled from some of their popular songs. Ashanti herself is featured on the song “A Fools Tale (Running Back)," which samples her all-time classic hit “Foolish” from 2002.

“Jerry Sprunger” was the only single released prior to the album, and holds arguably the most notable feature. The song is a play off T-Pain’s classic “I’m Sprung,” which samples the beat from the original and even features Tallahassee himself. Chris Brown, Snoop Dogg, Ludacris are just some of the other big names from the lengthy and diverse list of features.

The sampling is incredible on the album and almost every track on the album is a sample from one of the featured artist’s past hits. Along with these “remixes,” there are skits sprinkled into the album to help tell the stories of Tory’s romances.

Critiques of Lanez have been his one-dimensional approach to R&B, and that “Chixtape 5” is packed with filler rather than quality content. It is true that listening to a full-length album can be grueling, but that can be said about a majority of artists.

Lanez displays range on this project; from delivering bars melodically on “Jerry Sprunger,” to slowing things down and flexing his vocal range over The-Dream’s production on “Luv Ya Gyal // Love Sounds.”


Rating: 7/10

Reviewer’s Favorite Song: “Jerry Sprunger,” “Luv Ya Gyal // Love Sounds,” “Room 112

Reviewer’s Least Favorite Song: “Thoughts”

 


Connor Trask is a senior majoring in telecommunications and minoring in business liberal arts. To contact him, email cst5140@psu.edu.