Common – The Dreamer/The Believer Common – The Dreamer/The Believer

Common - The Dreamer/The Believer

Common perplexes me. On one end of the earth, the man has made some great hip hop. Go is one of those start-to-finish listens and easily one of my favorite hip hop albums of all time. That’s not really much of a statement however; I have to believe anyone with a remote interest in hip hop has a warm place for that album. My old roommate Jake who pretty much listened to Mac Dre exclusively once told me that Go got him “through the Czech Republic”. Not sure what that meant exactly, but quite a thing to think about nonetheless. If Go is the album that gets you through the Czech Republic, then there’s certainly another Common album you can find that’ll get you through some regular day-to-day shit. The man’s been pretty solid with his full-length releases for a long time.

On the other, more lame end of the earth, exists the artist whose voice is so familiar yet so forgettable; and whose albums are sometimes like reading a textbook, where you skim through three pages and then go “wait what did I just read?” Sometimes he gets a little ahead of the music and spoken word-y; as well as routinely being the weakest link on all those “featured” tracks that hip hop seems to love so much.

So I’m at the point now with Common, where I have to wonder with each release, from which end of the earth will this one be? Fortunately for our ears, and well-beings through trying times in foreign lands, The Dreamer/The Believer is definitely from the side of the earth that gets you through.
More than anything, what Common proves on this album is that he is one eclectic dude. I mean, we know he is. He’s basically Rapper-slash-everything at this point, but The Dreamer/The Believer jumps from one concept or idea to another so brazenly you never get a chance to fall asleep or feel like you have to go back because missed the last three tracks. He goes from his typical Common intro track, spacey and jazzy as fuck, but direct – accompanied by some Maya Angelou inspirations; directly into a Nas track, followed by an Electric Light Orchestra sample.

Wisely, the album isn’t cluttered with too many of his friends; in fact, appearances from Nas and John Legend seem welcomed and never steal the spotlight. Well, maybe Nas does a little. But that’s like saying the soft serve at the Mongolian Grill stole the show. It just does sometimes, but it doesn’t mean the meal wasn’t great.

1. The Dreamer Feat. Maya Angelou
2. Ghetto Dreams Feat. Nas
3. Blue Sky
4. Sweet
5. Gold
6. Lovin’ I Lost
7. Raw (How You Like It)
8. Cloth
9. Celebrate
10. Windows
11. The Believer Feat. John Legend
12. Pops Belief

Common - The Dreamer/The Believer, reviewed by Delicious on 2012-01-26T11:24:20-08:00 rating 3.8 out of 5

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