If there is one thing Nicki Minaj wants you to know from her debut album is that her name is Nicki Minaj. Over and over again she makes that point. Kind of strange for someone who has boasts so much self confidence and has been featured in more songs this summer than the number of tracks on her debut album.
Anyway, for the most part Nicki’s album is a huge disappointment. Most of the songs are boring and generic, something I never thought was in her vocabulary. Opener “I’m the Best” is one of the better songs on Pink Friday. The controversial “Roman’s Holiday” features Eminem and is pretty good — Nicki is rapping at one of her strongest points here but things go downhill when Eminem shows up. Classic Eminem; homophobic, misogynistic, violent and just all around shitty.
The singles “Right Thru Me”, “Your Love” and “Check It Out” are all highlights but “Check It Out” featuring Will.I.Am is the album’s best track. “Save Me”, “Blazin” featuring Kanye West and “Last Chance” featuring Natasha Bedingfield are all great songs too.
On most of these tracks, Minaj plays down her uniqueness that made her popup on the radar. Her quick change of voices and personalities is not really on any of the songs her, especially on the boring “Here I Am” and “Moment 4 Life” featuring Drake.
Ironically, some of the most fun songs come on the bonus tracks. “Super Bass” Nicki kills it sounding almost as strong as she did on Kanye West’s awesome “Monster”. “Muny” is another funny song about high fashion dreams and at the end Minaj asks fashion goddess, Anna Wintour for a cover spot on Vogue. “Girls Fall Like Dominoes” samples “Dominoes” by The Big Pink a really interesting surprise but works so, so well and like many of the bonus songs should have been on Pink Friday.
Nicki played it safe on her debut. She toned down her style and everything that made people fall in love with her. Most of the songs just don’t work and its a shock to see someone so talented to put out a somewhat offensive bland album.