Hit or Miss: Pusha T

“Critically acclaimed” is a phrase that has grown to become almost synonymous with Pusha T’s name. His work with  Clipse includes a classic hip-hop album, Hell Hath No Fury, and two other well-respected albums. As a solo artist, signed to Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. Music label, Pusha released the lauded Fear of God mixtape.
On his new EP, Fear of God II: Let Us Pray, Pusha T adheres to his standard of excellence, building off of five songs from the mixtape and adding seven
new ones.
Pusha is known for taking listeners inside his world of cocaine dealing, which he claims, quite convincingly,  to have made it out of with success a lot of money, and an interesting perspective on life. Mix that with gifted wordplay and a fierce delivery, and you have one of hip-hop’s most coveted MC’s, who stuck to his “real rap” formula to deliver an EP that fans old and new alike can appreciate.
The track listing starts out with “Changing of the Guards” featuring Diddy, who assists very briefly on the intro. Produced by Rico Beats, the banging, gritty track features Pusha displaying his knack for double entendres while exchanging a rap scene filled with “fake” rappers for the reemergence of the real.
Shawty Redd-produced “Amen” is a surprisingly great mix of artists, as Kanye West and Jeezy assist while Pusha spits his demonic flows and asks forgiveness at the end. “Trouble On My Mind” features Tyler the Creator, who spits his hedonistic-but-clever lines over a Neptunes-produced beat, going back and forth a few times with Pusha.
“What dreams are made of,” produced by the VIP’s, features an excerpt from a Ric Flair interview that is sure to surprise casual listeners who don’t know much about Pusha. A huge wrestling fan, Pusha grew up idolizing Ric Flair, and Flair’s patented boasting apparently now has a place in hip-hop. Pusha matches Flair’s boasting with his own “Louboutins under sweats/A hundred just landed form responding to a text/N****s talk money but I’m still unimpressed/when these thousand dollar sneakers got me
feeling underdressed.”
“Body Work” is a banger that finds Juicy J, Pusha, Meek Mill and French Montana, former drug dealers, claiming to kill whoever messes with their work, while “Everything That Glitters” finds a more introspective Pusha speaking of
the ills of those that live a life of crime.
“After Raid,” with 50 Cent and Pharell, the album reaches its jewel, “My God,” which was featured on the original mixtape. The church-like piano, horns and drums reminiscent of a battle march, meet Pusha’s street-life talk to make what is arguably the best song of his young solo career.
This EP was created for those who love lyricism and great production. For fans who heard the first project,
consider this a stepping stone in Pusha’s solo career, for which he prepares to release his first major album as a solo artist into mainstream.