"O.N.I.F.C."Releasing an album after only one year is a bold move, even for an eccentric soul like Wiz Khalifa. He’s a pop rapper who doesn’t regularly indulge in heady lyricism. So it’s a wonder as to what exactly he has to offer lyrically that fans didn’t already get from Rolling Papers. It’s all about the hook with Wiz. And for O.N.I.F.C. he’s certainly sticking to that ethos, never straying too far from his touchstones – money, weed, and women. There are moments, however few, where he does show his talents as a lyricist. But for the most part all O.N.I.F.C. exudes is an extension of Rolling Papers. His ego has eclipsed his drive. So goes the swagger of these five predictable lyrics:



Here’s a perfect example of how Wiz is making a colossal mistake. In his opening monologue he says, in a haze of blunt smoke I’m sure, “I’m just doing what I usually do man, sticking to the script, no new lines.” And there you have it, a clear declaration of apathy. He’s essentially wadding up his cash and throwing it, Ted DiBiase style, into the faces of his fans, saying I earned my keep, so to hell with progress. The title of the song is appropriate because the failure of this album will be a harsh lesson in timing: [LISTEN]

I spend a lot of days thinking
I hope this never gets old
Then I realize I’m on vacation
Somewhere it never gets cold

It’s Nothin’ feat. 2 Chainz

It's Nothin'Commissioning 2 Chainz on your album is a good move in that you’re automatically inviting two like-minded fan bases to converge. But the problem is that their lyrical cadences are far too similar to offer anything in the way of lyrical stimuli. Both are cemented in their comfort zones, resulting in a monotone effort. Even if Khalifa went the braggadocio route or perhaps back to his roots as an underground lyricist it would most certainly be a welcome departure from the illusory grandeur of his now privileged life: [LISTEN]

Stacking cheese till my bread right
Smoking weed till my head right
Did it all on my own, so Imma spend all my bread like

Medicated feat. Chevy Woods & Juicy J

Medicated feat. Chevy Woods & Juicy JMedicated” is the one beacon of hope in this shit storm of an album. It features a focused Wiz Khalifa who by all counts has the ability to be one of the most talented lyricists around. Here he maps out his rocky path to stardom, and his thrifty narrative creates a vivid portrait of a hustler on the grind – vulnerable one moment and inspired the next. Juicy J and Chevy Woods make notable cameos, but again it’s Wiz who shines, and offers a glimmer of hope for future endeavors: [LISTEN]

Back when I was young I had dreams of gettin’ richer
Then my homie Breeze set me down schooled me to the picture
I was with some wild niggas, put me on the game
Told me if you trying to make your move you got to know your lane, homie

Rise Above feat. Pharrell, Tuki Carter & Amber Rose

Rise Above feat. Pharrell, Tuki Carter & Amber RoseFrom the jump, Pharell can be heard all over this song. The heavy synths air the percussive elements right out which add a level of whimsy to the song perfect for a lyricist like Wiz Khalifa. Pharell plays it cool on the hook, while Wiz delivers a rapid fire verse, exercising some commendable breath control. The downfall is Wiz’s fiance Amber Rose. Sure, her accent is cute, but her pseudo talk-rap doesn’t jive with the song. Pharell, Wiz, and Tuki are talking about elevating over the drama, while Rose is fixated on it, bound to the thing she claims to detest: [LISTEN]

You would have thought that from seeing me goin’ hard that would motivate muthafuckas to get on they job
But instead they hatin’ on what I been doin’ havin’ conversations in my face bout what I should do for us

Remember You feat. The Weeknd

Remember YouOnce the blunt smoke clears from Wiz Khalifa’s head he’ll hopefully begin to see which elements on this album worked, and which were absolute failures. Collaborating with The Weeknd is something he should look to do again, as a recovery effort of sorts for the nuclear fallout he’s about to go through. Stylistically, the two work well together. The Weeknd and his soft falsetto compliments the hard angular nature of Wiz’s rap cadence. Both could use the next year or so to improve on their writing, but building together would help expedite that process: [LISTEN]

I like to call this shit old new
It means haters jocking our old moves
Popping champagne cause we made it
Back of the Phantom, we faded