J. Cole’s K.O.D. was my favorite album of 2018. Although I’m not the biggest fan of Cole’s storytelling style, K.O.D. was a well, thought-out production that shifted both the culture and Cole as an artist. In a climate of hip-hop where there was a sense of division, K.O.D. bridged the gap between the OGs and new rappers while delivering exploring themes relating to addiction, self-awareness, consumerism and much more! In 2019, he isn’t showing any signs of slowing down. Kicking off the year with “MIDDLE CHILD,” J. Cole finds himself assuming the position between the OGs and new school rappers; only this time, the Dreamville frontman sending a warning. “I’m countin’ my bullets, I’m loadin’ my clips / I’m writin’ down names, I’m makin’ a list / I’m checkin’ it twice and I’m gettin’ ’em hit,” he spits over the T-Minus production. It sounds like Moe Dee is ready to eat in the most humble way!
“If I smoke a rapper, it’s gon’ be legit / It won’t be for clout, it won’t be for fame / It won’t be ’cause my shit ain’t sellin’ the same / It won’t be to sell you my latest lil’ sneakers / It won’t be ’cause some nigga slid in my lane,” he continues with a verse speculated to be aimed at Kanye West. Both verses find the Roc Nation artist reflecting on his journey in hip-hop; the highs, the lows, the rewards, and the demons. Following the release of K.O.D. I must admit that I’m not impressed with this release. Although the track gets me excited for Revenge of The Dreamers III and the forthcoming album The Off Season, I believe Cole could have come harder considering the flex on this track; but that could go back to his style of delivery. With two forthcoming projects, I’m sure this is just the tip of the iceberg! Looking forward to more from J. Cole! Listen to “MIDDLE CHILD” below!