Published Apr 22, 201423-year old Australian native Iggy Azalea gained notoriety when she first appeared on the cover of XXL's Freshman Class 2012, and shortly after inked an independent deal with T.I.'s Hustle Gang imprint. After two years of label woes and pushbacks, Iggy Azalea has finally released her debut album, The New Classic.
The term classic is often synonymous with the idea of capturing an audience and offering a personal insight to who an artist is. Opening with "Walk The Line," Azalea introduces a new chapter in her life; one filled with cocky content ("Don't Need Y'all"), money and name brands ("Lady Patra") and brazen "bow down" bars ("Goddess"). While Azalea proves to have a strong delivery, it's not without many hiccups in her content.
When the term "baddest bitch" was adopted by the likes of Lil Kim and Trina, it expressed being on top of their game, but regrettably, Iggy turns to "New Bitch" to explore jealousy issues only 16-year-old girls should be concerned with. The overwhelming theme of proving she's the best is Azalea's greatest downfall. The heartfelt "Impossible is Nothing" explores a rags to riches narrative, but not without losing Azalea's own identity in the process. Likewise, "Black Widow," which features Rita Ora (and was written by Katy Perry and produced by Stargate), should pass the threshold between mediocrity and superstardom, but falls by the wayside with little personality.
Iggy Azalea tumbles in terms of delivering a classic rap album, but she does find the blueprint for creating catchy radio hits. Lead singles "Fancy" and "Work" move to the tune of Gwen Stefani's solo catalogue, while the dancehall-inspired "Fuck Love" and T.I.-assisted "Change Your Life" take pages out of Beyoncé's "Upgrade You" book. It's not to say Iggy Azalea can't rap — she can surely deliver a verse and follow a rhythmic cadence — but at the end of the day, The New Classic meddles more in pop ambitions than triple beam dreams. (Island)