I Am Not a Human is a return to safer territory for Lil Wayne
I Am Not a Human Being 4/5 The creosote-throated MC is famously wary of the press, but even for him, getting locked in solitary confinement in a NYC prison seems like an extreme way to avoid reading bad reviews. Ironically, Wayne needn’t have bothered poaching that white rhino (or whatever it is he did) – after the so-so reception for his pet rap-rock project, Rebirth, new album I Am Not a Human is (largely) a return to safer and more fertile territory.
The title refers to the album’s retro-space-age robo-funk production, but lyrically – as usual – Wayne is coming on like an inverse Elephant Man, proudly trumpeting his freakdom. Many of the Young Money crew crop up in cameo form, including Lil Twist on the lyrically crude but sonically effective stand-out ‘Popular’, and rightly lauded flavour of the year Nicki Minaj, who provides the hook for ‘What’s Wrong with Them’ but is otherwise used sparingly to avoid overshadowing her incarcerated benefactor.
Wayne’s continuing muso-crush on rap-rock sees him include a couple of cut-and-shuts with reasonable returns – the title track being one of his better efforts in the pseudo-genre. But it’s the likes of the sparse but distinctive ‘Single’ that really show off Wayne’s mercurial abilities to their best.