If you made seven albums, with eleven years of music and touring under your belt, you would consider that a good run. However; if you‚Äôre KJ-52, or as the album purposes to speak, above the status quo, then to stop when you can keep going would be a failure. Dangerous seeks to communicate that we must live above the normal and not live dangerously to sin but in the will of Christ.
The album starts off with KJ and CJ(Canton Jones) sharing a song together. One thing I like about this album is the variety of features here, however, I didn‚Äôt like it as an intro for the album and Cajo‚Äôs singing was off key in many parts which surprised me. The next track however is a track that is not only overdue, but is done in the right time and the right artists.
With the whole tragedy that is Trayvon Martin‚Äôs death and the questions of race and the battle of racism, this track hits at such a poignant point. With KJ and Lecrae you have arguably the two BIGGEST artists in the genre who represent two skin colors that are the face of the issues of racism in America. This issue was explored in 116‚Äôs Amped EP(which needs a part 2 by the way) on a track ‚ÄúRed Revolution‚ÄĚ, and Lecrae and KJ really share their heart on this one, probably my favorite track
To quote some bars from KJ, check out the issues he‚Äôs went through as a white rapper: ‚ÄúNow my skin is light, and I aint fittin‚Äô in/I‚Äôm on the outside of Hip Hop screamin‚Äô ‚ÄėLet me in!‚Äô/I‚Äôm filled up with sin, hatin‚Äô the very skin I‚Äôm in/cuz everytime I rhyme they be like,‚ÄĚLook..Eminem‚ÄĚ/lookin‚Äô back again I was in the worst place/all I had was Beastie Boys and third bass/I‚Äôm the dude who always came down in third place/until I heard the story of life and your grace‚ÄĚ The issue of racism in the church as well as out isn‚Äôt something that will be easy to grow from, but in Christ all things are possible.
The next track uses an often used image for God as being a superhero, or in MaryMary‚Äôs song a superfriend. With a few superhero metaphors he speaks on the power of God over any other and the truth of his love, it was an ok track for me. The next few songs I can tell by listening have stretched him as an artist, for in the title track ‚ÄúDangerous‚ÄĚ, it‚Äôs him actually singing the chorus. This was a really great step for KJ I believe, for he stepped out and did a great job on the track! It may not be the Luger-esque type of track that some may look for, but its good music. The track speaks about the hurt when we see a fellow brother/sister stray from living in Christ, and personally I have seen some people do this in my life and it‚Äôs very heartbreaking. It hurts to see the danger they are in, as well as the fact that you see the hurt even through the rebellion and you long for them to be brought to the feet of Christ and restored.
"Facemelt" is the next track after "Dangerous", and like I said, it stretches KJ as well. He‚Äôs done a rock/rap mix before, but once again this is him on the chorus and I‚Äôm not used to him in that element, for it‚Äôs often the funny yet serious lyrics. Another good sounding track musically, Tedd T. and Aaron Sprinkle provided a cool template for him. The next track with Thi‚Äôsl has the rock element in there as well, but with some fast hitting snare shots that southern tracks are known for, it was a great mix for the track. KJ comes back funny with ‚ÄúDo The Bill Cosby‚ÄĚ, its not a track I would really enjoy listening to honestly, for I‚Äôm tired of the ‚Äúdance move‚ÄĚ tracks, but the Cosby impersonation in the beginning was funny.
The last few tracks to round out the album are pretty cool, ‚ÄúSo Far Apart‚ÄĚ again deals with the believer who is compromising, yet how it affects in the relationship between another believer. The track ‚ÄúBrand New‚ÄĚ by definition will feel new for the style of the track is more contemporary than Hip Hop, but it actually works. Rhema Soul features on ‚ÄúSpeed That Light‚ÄĚ on a well produced track, there isn‚Äôt too much going on and allows the wordplay to shine through. Dre Murray also features on the album, on the track ‚ÄúThat Was My Life‚ÄĚ, and I really like this track. KJ sings again in the chorus, but it‚Äôs more auto-tuned this time, and it speaks to the former life before Christ, a topic talked of a lot of course, but this track is a good listen. The last track again sounds less like Hip Hop, and has a bit of a techno/dance track feel, and depending on the people and environment it will either go good or bad. For me, it‚Äôs not something that excited me.
With the amount of albums under KJ‚Äôs belt and the amount of criticism from within and outside of the church, it‚Äôs refreshing to see him still follow the call of God in ministry and doing music that he loves to do. Most would say this is dangerous, whether in their words or in the type of songs they make that would match what‚Äôs popular, but its cool to notice that when KJ does music, he just does it. When you look at his collection, you can tell he does Hip Hop, but he is able to also expand into other genres as well. The type of producers used for the album that helped craft the sound played a good part in this, and one thing about the album I can say is the mix is great! There were some topics that have been spoken of many times before, and I felt that with the change in style, the wordplay level has been diminished, but KJ has offered a solid album and however long he‚Äôs supposed to do this, I know it will always continue.
Categorical Ratings Breakdown:
Beat Selection/Production: 4/5
SOHH | iTunes | Amazon