From Stripper to Chart Topper
“This some real-life fairytale Binderella shit”
Cardi B just dropped her first album EVER on April 6, 2018 titled, Invasion of Privacy. After taking her official rapper turn with a pair of mixtapes, she broke out with the world-conquering “Bodak Yellow”. This track informs her haters that she is definitely not the same broke girl that she once was: “These expensive, these is red bottoms, these is bloody shoes. Hit the store, I can get’em both, I don’t wanna choose,” and we all know how expensive them Louboutins are so if she can get two pairs at once then damnnnn!
Invasion of Privacy is a forceful response to those cynics. The album is showy and upfront just like Cardi B herself. The album was everything I was expecting and more. The album starts off with an explosive track titled “Get Up 10” which is forged in the same fire that shaped Meek Mills “Dreams and Nightmares” intro. Cardi raps with so much fire and power, a born star who’s grown so accustomed to being told to shut off her light for the sake of others, which I mean come-on the girl is adorable, why would anyone want that? Cardi is a great communicator, and as we all know she is very blunt and loves to speak her mind, but her voice is an instrument of its own. Her tone and rhythm construct each syllable into a snap. She wields her voice like a weapon, and she can make even the dullest seem glamorous with a particularly choice phrasing. This particular economy is the core of her appeal, and every verse is permeated with its impact. Some punchlines are laugh-out-loud funny while others are immensely bright. “Write a verse while I twerk, I wear off-white at church. Prolly make the preacher sweat. Read the bible, Jesus wept,” she spits on the track “She Bad.” Cardi is rapidly improving as a technician, closing the gaps in her writing and tightening up her flows. Even more magnificent than her sharpened rap skills, though, is her rapidly expanding range.
Cardi surfaces as a first-rate song maker on Invasion of Privacy, crafting mousy indictments and cautionary tales as easily as club bangers and flex anthems. She naturally covers quite a bit of ground, dressing down no-good boyfriends, considering her come-up from pissy elevators to walking red carpets in tailored gowns, or assembling twerkers everywhere to spontaneously pussy pop for guap. “Best Life” which features Chance the Rapper, rehashes early career controversies and remixes an iconic Tupac poem into an orgin story. The track “Be Careful” fires warning shots for a cheating boyfriend and happens to be one of my favorite tracks on the album. In “I Like It” Cardi collabs with two of Latins top leading artists, Bad Bunny and J Balvin for what I think will be the song of the summer as she flips boogaloo into Latin trap. On this track, Cardi revamps Pete Rodriguez’s classic into a cross-cultural block party, bilingual and welcoming. Cardis raps have always released confidence and charm, but with Invasion of Privacy she seizes her seat on the rap throne through demanding, unrelenting taunts. The girl is fully self-aware and seemingly unstoppable.
The production on the album is magnificent and varying. A record that produced the gold track “Bartier Cardi,” the R&B track “Ring,” and “Thru Your Phone,” both in which she spits some sick bars in. Invasion of Privacy never draws back away from potential risk, delivering hugely satisfying payoffs.
Cardi tweeted “I started winning when the whole world was doubting on me! Think imma lose with my little baby counting on me?” after she revealed her pregnancy on last week’s Saturday Night Live. Invasion of Privacy symbolizes that determination and that relentlessness; direct, honest and raw, with just enough polish. She took an unusual path to get here, and yet everything seems to be going according to plan. Cardi never had any interest in turning her haters into fans; because as she said the haters still listened to her music and it only benefited her. So she’d rather just show them all up, and her debut is her greatest and grandest kiss-off yet.