Rap Album Reviews: Tory Lanez “Memories Don’t Die”
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2018 has been a slow burn with regard to the number of albums that have been released compared to it’s 2017 counterpart. Even with me saying that, the quality of the albums released has been great, which brings me to the sophomore album Memories Don’t Die by Tory Lanez. If you’ve been living under a rock for the last few years, please allow me to bring you up to speed. Daystar Peterson, known to the rap world as Tory Lanez, is an artist from the Toronto region who began his career almost 10 years ago. After displaying a freestyle over the “Beamer Benz or Bentley” beat, he was recruited by artist Sean Kingston to sign to his Time is Money label. For reasons unknown, Lanez left the imprint after releasing Just Landed, One Verse One Hearse, Playing For Keeps & Mr. 1 Verse Killah mixtapes. A few years later, Tory begins receiving critical acclaim for his mixtapes Lost Cause in 2014, The New Toronto & Chixtape 3 in 2015, the latter being the series dedicated to the ladies by remixing classic R&B records. In 2016, Lanez released his debut album I Told You which to many was a letdown to those who have been riding alongside him. I thought it was pretty dope besides the skits. It’s been almost 2 years and the challenge is presented: Can Fargo overcome the sophomore slump? Read on for my Rap Album Review of Tory Lanez Memories Don’t Die.
Intro to the album which ironically is a skit. My initial thoughts? Maaan here we go again! But before I jump to conclusions I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt. Play Picasso is the producer of the 28-second skit.
Old Friends x New Foes
Tory starts the record off with some serenading about how some of his old friends have turned on him. Song switches up halfway in and he comes in with a rapid fire flow. He also talks about how the new people he’s being introduced to are trying to finesse him out of his funds. Play Picasso & Lavi$h are responsible for the beat.
Third track in and we’re presented with the lead single to the album. Produced by C-Sick, this record carries resemblance of the horns used in the track Trophies by Drake. Content sounds nothing like it though. A pretty good song that hits hard in the car at loud volumes. C-Sick has worked with various artists, most notably Logic. Good to see him adding more hits to his resume.
The Fargo fans who love him for his singing should feel right at home with this one. Tory talks about how the love he gave wasn’t reciprocated in a past relationship. Now that he’s no longer with the lady, he goes out and splurges on various things for himself. Towards the end of the song, it reminds me of something you would hear on a Super Mario soundtrack (a random thought). Happy Perez & Play Picasso co-produced this record.
Tory is at his best when he displays his Caribbean side on records and this one is no exception. This is the second single to the album and is a good follow up. Dude is very talented and showcasing his vocal range here. This is definitely a club worthy and I should expect to hear this in many playlists as the weather begins to get warmer. Production credits are awarded to Dr. Zuez & Play Picasso.
Benevolent is rapid fire Tory in his bragging bag. The track switches up halfway into it and gets soulful. Tory talks about a time when he almost died from alcohol poisoning: “I woke up in the hospital at 2PM/ Abu Dhabi club party, try to do me in/ Paramedic talkin’, tell me in the ambulance/ I could barely hear this n***a, just the ambiance”. E. C Fresco, Play Picasso & Lavi$h co-produced it together.
Real Thing (feat. Future)
Real Thing is the third single from the album and includes a verse from Future Hendrix. C-Sick is the solo producer on this record. Nothing really stellar here besides a catchy beat. Kind of reminds me of a record that I could see Future & The Weeknd performing.
Hate To Say
In this record, Fargo has a lot to get off his chest. He addresses the issues he had with Travis Scott “Me and Travis Scott almost fought at the Mala Luna/ We both agreed shortly after that it was music/ We possibly could be doin’ that’s bigger than tryna ruin it/ So my apologies, nigga, just forgive me for doin’ it”. He also mentions the tension he had with fellow Canadian artist Drake and what could possibly occur if the two decide to squash it: “Lord forgive ’em, Lord forgive ’em, I was trippin’ all the time/ I spit subliminal dissin’, just tryna rip s**t/ Not realizin’ if I took the time to kick it and me and Drake mendin’ bridges it’d probably equal to winnin’. Production credits go to Christian Lou, Bobby Made The Beat & Play Picasso.
B.I.D. is Tory in his melodic ways. Intoxicated, he doesn’t want to do anything other than “buss it down”. Smash David & OG Parker produced the track.
48 Floors (feat. Mansa)
Produced by Mansa & Play Picasso, 48 Floors is another track where Tory is showing his versatility. Mansa comes through on the second half and gives a quick 16. This track reminds me of something you’d hear at carnival or circus, but with drums.
B.B.W.W. x Fake Show
For the life of me, I STILL don’t understand what B.B.W.W. stands for, but it really doesn’t matter when the track is dope. I can tell by now that Tory likes to live his life on the edge because he talks about another near-death experience with his Rolls Royce Wraith: “Yeah, bought a new white Wraith, last night, nearly crashed it/ Spinnin’ out on a highway, 720 in a Aspin/ Bad b***h in the passeng’, seen her whole life flashin’/ Ray whippin a McLaren right behind me, nigga, spun right past him/ Thank God I’m alive”. The track switches up midway into it and he prays that none of his exes get famous. Play Picasso, E. C Fresco & SkipOnDaBeat lend a hand producing.
Dance For Me (feat. NAV)
I have to admit, not really feeling this one. Produced by Sergio R & Play Picasso, Tory sings about a woman who doesn’t like to dance but will make an exception for him. There is a guest feature from NAV, although I’m not familiar with his body of work. This song is a little too repetitive for my liking.
Pieces (feat. 50 Cent)
This one is a pretty dope track. 50 Cent gives the track a dark, gritty vibe. Tory first tells the story of a woman whose father was killed by police and mother was on drugs. The mother decided to allow her brother to take care of the young lady because she wasn’t able to do so herself. Unbeknownst to her, he also was a drug addict and began to molest the young girl. Fearing for her life, she decided to get a gun and kill him. The story then transitions into a guy who never grew up lacking a father because he was killed at a young age. This causes him to get caught up in the street life. One day a drug addict approaches him and claims that she is his mother. Startled, he doesn’t believe her until she begins telling him about some features that he carries. She then lets him know that his father’s murderer was none other than his cousin and that everyone around him knew but were reluctant to tell him. Because what he heard was too much for him to take, he shoots his mother and then turns the gun on himself. Honestly I would like to see Tory tell more stories this one. It’s an art form that’s lacking overall in today’s hip-hop. Play Picasso assists with the backdrop.
Connection (feat. Fabolous, Davo & Paloma Ford)
Definitely my favorite record of the album. Fargo talks about the connection that he and a lady share and wants the world to know how she’s exclusive to him. Paloma Ford slides into the track with a sultry voice. Fabolous comes through with the 90s Bad Boy references. Davo does his thing as well. Everyone seems to compliment each other on the record. This one will definitely be on repeat for me for a while. Nick Fouryn & Smash David are responsible for the production.
Hillside (feat. Wiz Khalifa & Mansa)
Tory & Mansa find themselves collaborating again with Hillside. Wiz Khalifa is a feature here but it isn’t enough to make me enjoy the track. Mansa & Play Picasso get production credits here
Here’s another track I can see getting radio play. Sean Meyer, Cashmere Cat & Benny Blanco co-produced this record & are responsible for his double platinum single Luv. This is “sit poolside and have a good drink” music
Happiness x Tell Me
Happiness has Tory receiving news that his mother passed away & how family had to cope with the tragedy. The beat switches up and Tell Me is him addressing the critics who say that he’s biting the style of other artists. Sergio & Play Picasso get production credits.
The album closes with a banger from AraabMUZIK & we get Tory opening up more about his pitfalls and how he was able to turn it all around. A proper way to wrap up the project.
All in all, I would say that it’s a pretty good follow up to his debut album. Tory was able to avoid the problem that tends to plague many artists. There’s a few songs that I won’t go back to but there’s plenty that I will. You can pick up your copy of the album on Amazon Or ITunes. What are your thoughts about the album? Leave a comment.