Lecrae - Church Clothes (Mixtape)

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Artist: Lecrae
Title: Church Clothes (Mixtape)
Label: Reach Records
Release Date: 5/10/12
Reviewer: Josh Burkey

Tracklisting:

  1. Co-Sign
  2. APB (ft Thi’sl)
  3. Church Clothes
  4. Cold World (ft. Tasha Catour)
  5. Welcome to H-Town
  6. Inspiration
  7. Rise
  8. Darkest Hour
  9. Black Rose
  10. The Price of Life (ft. Andy Mineo & Co Campbell)
  11. Special (ft. Lester L2 Shaw)
  12. No Regrets (ft. Suzy Rock)
  13. Gimme A Second
  14. Long Time Coming (ft. Swoope)
  15. Misconception (ft. Propanganda, Braile  & Odd Thomas)
  16. Spazz
  17. Sacrifice
  18. Rejects (ft. Christon Gray)

When it comes to modern Christian Rap, Lecrae is to this generation what DC Talk was to our parents generation. When folks hear this type of terminology, they instantly think of gospel music or as it is being dubbed nowadays, “gospel rap”. However, this is something that Lecrae wants to get across to the listener, “Folks wanna call this gospel rap. Nah homeboy, this is sacrifice.” As he raps over a solid beat in the song, “Sacrifice”, that ultimately just leaves the listener breathless. “Sacrifice” is just one of many songs that leave a lasting impression on the listener from his new mixtape, Church Clothes. Since the release of 2011’s Rehab: Overdose, Lecrae has experienced his fair share of mainstream attention, being featured on Cypher for BET, Static Selecta’s collaboration with the rapper, playing South by Southwest ; just to name a few. Which brings us to the release of his new mixtape, Church Clothes. This is a new environment in which we get to hear Lecrae.

The album opens up “Co-Sign”, which is just delivered under a world of fully loaded passion. The opening track always is a gateway to what the rest of the record holds. So, with this first track, Clothes is an unimaginable fully loaded album with lots of passion, solid beats and such fire deliverance from this Atlanta native. Right? Right. Unfortunately, this passion dies down a bit on this second track, “APB” which features Thi’sl. The track is one of those moments in which you hear a song that you’re content with. You remember those, ‘this isn’t good, but it’s not bad’ kind of moments. That is exactly what this track is. However, it does flow right into the title track of the album, which already has its own video. With this record, Lecrae literally takes no prisoners in his lyrical content. “I lack words for these actors called pastors. All these folks are hypocrite”, as he raps in “Church Clothes”. This is only one of many that he has some of the most solid spitting of his career. Also look to “ Inspiration”, “Darkest Hour”, “Price of Life ft. Andy Mineo & Co Campbell” & “Gimme a Second”, just to name a few.

As good as this record is, it has its moments of falling. “Welcome to H-Town” holds one of the most annoying choruses on this album. Don’t get me wrong, it holds very solid rapping and deliverance but the beat is what makes it suffer in the end. Another example can be heard on, “Black Rose”. This track has a lot of reggae moments that almost feels like experimentation from Lecrae, that is no way works out in his favor. “Spazz” is a song that again, just really has an overly done beats that gets on the listener’s nerves very fast. There is nothing special about this. It honestly feels like they are trying to deliver a straight radio-friendly, crowd-pleaser of a song. The only song on this album that really falls flat all together, unfortunately is “Special”. Honestly, couldn’t get into it at all.

OVERALL: This record is some of Lecrae’s best stuff to date. This album is certainly one to check out. It made worth wild for songs like “Church Clothes”, “Sacrifice” & “Rejects”. In the old tradition, you can’t have the good without the bad. You will also have your duds on this album as well. “APB”, “Special” & “Rise” just to name a few. Clothes is an astonishing entry from Lecrae. This album is highly recommended. His passion is at an all-time high, his deliverance at times is almost unreal because of how good it is and he is accompanied by some of the best beats in his career. Church Clothes is where it is at.

RIYL: Trip Lee, PRo, Yaves, Flame