The Reviews Are In For Nicki Minaj's 'Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded.' Album Is Getting Slammed By Some, Praised By Others. How Would You Rate It? [Poll]




The wait for Nicki Minaj's much-anticipated sophomore album, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded, is over, but critics are divided over whether it's a worthy successor to the diva's platinum-selling, Grammy-nominated debut.


To be clear, nary a critic is questioning Minaj's talent. Indeed, many of the negative notices lament Minaj's decision to focus less on her gifts as a rapper — which are evidenced on some of the album's early tracks — in favor of creating generic dance songs designed to appeal to mainstream radio.


In an at times scathing one-and-a-half-star review, Slant praises Reloaded's opening tracks as "hard, confrontational rap songs" that are "brilliant." However, and it's a big however, "The remaining 53 minutes of Roman Reloaded are a disaster, so much so that I could fill the rest of this review with a non-exhaustive list of the most embarrassing missteps." Ouch.


The album is divided "almost exactly between a rap half and a pop half," and if the rap half — particularly the tracks "Beez in the Trap" and "Come on a Cone" — is being praised, the pop half is being trashed harder than just about any pop album in recent memory.


"At her best, Nicki Minaj is, line for line, one of the wittiest, most creative rappers working today, either male or female. Her many personas and voices fly through her songs with joyful abandon, and she seems to be having so much fun astonishing us," the LA Times writes. "On the first half of her second album, Pink Friday ... Roman Reloaded, the Trinidadian American rapper from New York City offers repeated evidence of her talents, and she delivers funny, biting, bawdy lines and rhyming couplets with apparent glee. ... But then, after the ridiculousness that is 'Sex in the Lounge' (which sounds like a Lonely Island parody of an R. Kelly song, and, [unsurprisingly], features Lil Wayne), the album drives off a cliff."


Among the complaints: » The club bangers that compose the album's second half are "of the blandest and most cookie-cutter variety. The music behind 'Automatic' could be mistaken for a 15-year-old's first stab at making a dance track on Ableton software, a cynically simple run with clumsy synth chord progressions that were already tired when invented at cheesy 1998 raves." — LA Times


» "The five RedOne-helmed tracks in a row feel as distinct and independent as the opening six did, but big synths and dramatic drops are the stars of these songs, with Minaj herself reduced to supporting player." » "There are way too many anonymous dance numbers like 'Automatic' and 'Fire Burns' that could have come from a dozen singers." —


The consensus seems to be that Nicki is at her best when she's spitting lines as Roman rather than pursuing the beat-driven bubblegum that, ironically, has provided her with some of her biggest Billboard chart hits, including the RedOne-produced Reloaded single "Starships," which currently sits at #5 on the Hot 100, and her collaboration with David Guetta, "Turn Me On" (#10 this week after peaking at #4 earlier this year).


There are some overall positive notices out there. In a near rave, Global Grind calls Reloaded "a rollercoaster ride of musical insanity, mesmerizing rap bars [and] catchy pop tracks that you may not want to like, but end up singing anyway." Popdust awarded the set a three-and-a-half (out of four) star review, commenting that its "monstrous beats and [Nicki's] convincing delivery leave little room for rebuttal."


Giving it a B+, Newsday says, "The first half of Roman Reloaded is the Nicki we've come to love. The pride of Jamaica, Queens, is brash and in your face, messing with gender roles and delivering all sorts of zingers. In first-rate hip-hop like 'I Am Your Leader,' where she holds her own with Rick Ross and Cam'ron, and 'Champion,' where she takes on Nas and Young Jeezy, Minaj cements her rep as hip-hop's brightest new star." The news mag even goes so far as to say that Minaj "has her moments" on the pop side. That's just about the biggest compliment we would find regarding Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded's controversial second half.


Have you listened to Nicki's latest release? If so, rate the album in our poll and let us know your opinions in the comments below.

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Comment by SonGetWrec on April 3, 2012 at 9:29pm
@www...yeah you know a lot about the "rainbow club". you are, after all, the president and founder. you really think i give a fuc about the opinions of some WACK e-thugs? kick dust n!gga. nicki nicki nicki nicki nicki nicki nicki....
Comment by Dope MC - Chris on April 3, 2012 at 9:29pm
@top 3 Flop means more than just sales. This album will be a flop because it will sell good the first week yes only because Nicki has a buzz and thats because she is signed to YMCMB anything she puts out will get attention. It will probably sell a s*** ton this week just cuz birdman will buy a ton and all the little girls will buy it but other than that it wont sell s***. It's going to be a flop because a year from now no one will be playing it and people will be still laughing at it. Sure it will sell but it will be a flop as far as quality albums go and as far as pleasing rap fans go. Oferall this is just a glittery piece of s***.
Comment by paul on April 3, 2012 at 9:22pm
Baby will probably buy several hundred thousand copies of it and make it sell plat like C4 did.
Comment by paul on April 3, 2012 at 9:21pm
If you made Weezy's musical "talent" feminized. You'd get Nicki Minaj. Garbage all the way. You couldn't pay me to listen to this crap.
Comment by 1THUG aka Tha NYCHA LEGEND!! on April 3, 2012 at 9:20pm
Dis betch is like tha female substance to her cuts. She got a lotta fans in tha homo-sensual community...they gon support dis betch!!
Comment by M.K.J... on April 3, 2012 at 9:19pm
Comment by YAS on April 3, 2012 at 8:57pm
I heard the album and is straight up garbage. I can't see where in today's world you would call this "music"...sounds like some pop mainstream get rich why still hot and relevant. Not really putting any effort into the music because they know a bunch of sheep are going to buy it. Don't get me wrong,I guarantee the album will go platinum because the radio is gonna play what ever the single of the month is at least 1,000, till your brainwashed into buying her garbage leftovers. Let me say that this is the formula for any artist nowadays and its 99.9% effective.
Once you wake up and realize that they don't give a damn about you, and that all your doing is making them richer, and making yourselves poorer. You gonna eventually figure out I can get all this stuff for yourself a favor. Get if for free here....
You can get anything else you like also....And don't give me that support the artist crap...that's B.S...Like I said before they don't give a damn about you, there just in it to get rich..while you get nothing else in your money and get it free....They should pay me for listening to there time is precious...peace and free your mind....
Comment by Prince on April 3, 2012 at 8:35pm
worst album of the year. Fails as a pop record and as a "rap" record. She's a sell out.
Comment by top 3 = Ross/Banks/Kiss on April 3, 2012 at 8:31pm
@ Chris R, If you read my previous comments, I clearly say at least twice that i'm not a fan of the album, at all !!!!!!! your comment was, "@op 3 = Ross/Banks/Kiss or this will flop and become hated and no matter what she does she will always be hated", My comment back to you was that you might be right, but I wouldn't put my money on it !!! Never did you commented on quality, and never did I responded about quality, you commented about about flopping, and I commented about the album selling, am i missing something ?
Comment by Dope MC - Chris on April 3, 2012 at 8:27pm
@top3 since when does sales directly equal quality of an album? Sales = popularity not skill. This album aint rap its pop and honestly more people are hating it right now then loving it

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