When Luda announced the release of his new album, Ludaversal, most critics assumed that this would be the Fast and Furious star’s return to the rap game. I can see how that can be construed, but the thing is he can not return to something he has never left. Yes he has had a stellar career with the silver screen, but talent doesn’t leave. It tucks itself into a quiet corner awaiting the perfect moment to show itself once more. Although the new generation may feel that other southern artists may sit on the throne of rap, Mr. Bridges navigation of metaphors and double entendres prove that the throne he sits may contain some porcelain because he defecated on the naysayers with Ludaversal. The thing is no matter how dope the beat is, if the artist can not ride it like a porn star with bars that f*ck the beat up like Pinky, then the beat goes for naught. Nothing went for naught on Ludaversal. Luda’s bars are whimsical as the words wrap their meanings on to the coarseness of the 808’s and hi-hats. The flexibility in rhymes are comparable to a contortionist.
David Banner charms the listener on the production of “Ludaversal Intro”. Mr. Bridges wastes no time in captivating the listener with his animated delivery that fans have come to appreciate. The Luda that once asked us “How Low” and told us to “Move Bitch” or he was going to “Throw Them Bows” has kept the fundamentals of his rhyme scheme, but growth is definitely exhibited in the vulnerability of tracks “Money” featuring Rick Ross ( produced by DJ Pain) and “This Has Been My World” (produced by Just Blaze). “In My Life” featuring John Legend ( produced by Bigg D & Steven Q-Beatz) is another track where Ludacris is transparent. The soothing tone of Legends’ vocals is comparable to the forehead kiss. Simple, but powerful. “Ocean Skies” featuring Monica (produced by the J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League is by far the most beautiful track. Reflecting on his late father and life , Monica’s voice is full-bodied and relaxing while Luda’s verses are mellow like Merlot.
The Luda that ethered a fellow ATLien on Young Buck’s “Stomp” appears again. Enlisting Big K.R.I.T. on a Mike Will Made It beat, “Come And See Me” has Luda and Krizzle trading bars assassinating those that object with a southern flow that would make UGK and Eightball & MJG proud. This by far is some of Mike Will Made It best work. “Burning Bridges” featuring Jason Aldean (produced by Alex da Kid) is my favorite track. The rebellious lyrics are liberating. This is the anthem for those that are tired of being misused. “Charge It To The Rap Game” is an IllMind production were Luda dismantles the pretentiousness of the industry. It’s simple, sweet and effective. The radio single , “Good Loving” , featuring Miguel is that one song that will question if it’s socially acceptable to cut on a rap song.
For most listeners, the cohesiveness of the album may be hard to determine at first listen, but a closer inspection shows that this album’s symmetry is found on the threads of liberation and gratification. Ludaversal questions the standard of the rap game. If other artists speak to your soul, Luda just blew your back out.
Cop the album on iTunes now or stream before you buy below!