Lil Wayne

Tha Carter III (Cash Money / Universal)

Phases & Stages

Lil Wayne

Tha Carter III (Cash Money/Universal)

Rap's Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (here "Dr. Carter"/"Mr. Carter") bends and breaks, mumbles and shouts, testing an unfathomable range of voices on Tha Carter III that shrills a clusterfuck of sonic inconsistencies mixed harder than codeine and Coke. It's Wayne's personality that both floats and sinks TC III. His "I'm me ... C3. ... It's me ... times three" rant on opener "3 Peat" plays out simultaneously entertaining and discouraging, while the incessant "A Milli" drones charmingly grating. It's all a joke, probably, as hinted on "La La." "Phone Home" broadcasts live from Planet Weezy (one zooted place) and pits the NOLA prince as E.T. on promethazine: "We are not the same – I am an alien, like Gonzalez, young college student, who 'den flipped the game." Wayne's "best rapper alive" claim on the Kanye West-produced "Let the Beat Build" holds no water when Jay-Z torches "Mr. Carter."

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