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The Off-Season – J. Cole

Written by on October 25, 2021

Written By: Madeline Moore

On May 14th, 2021 J. Cole released his sixth studio album The Off-Season, with this album, Cole steps back from his usual form of writing and storytelling, and instead uses clever word play and shows off more of his creative side.

The album includes 12 songs, all landing on the Buildboard top 40, with features from 21 Savage, Morray, Bas, Lil Baby, and 6LACK. The album itself is very diverse and showcases a many impressive rhymes. When comparing The Off-Season to Cole’s previous albums he definitely steps away from his normal sound. Cole showcases a lively and upbeat tone with the song My Life, where he sings of the issues he has gone through to get to where he is today, also featuring 21 Savage and Morray. With the song Applying Pressure J. Cole raps about the struggles of becoming a successful rapper over a playful beat.

Overall, the album tells the story of his successes, failures, life, and death through personal and intimate lyrics that contain inventive metaphors with deeper meanings. Cole carefully crafted each song on the album to showcase his nimble rapping skills in a careful and clean manner. The Off-Season displays a more consistent, vulnerable and relatable side to the rapper for his listeners to vibe to. Cole did a great job of creating an album with a modern tone, while still representing hints of nostalgia.

Overall, I found this album to be some of Cole’s fiercest rapping yet. The Off-Season is sure to have at least one song that everyone can enjoy. J. Cole really expands rap and singing wise with this album, giving his listeners something completely new compared to his past albums. A few of my favorite tracks were Amari, 95 South, and Let Go of My Hand. I would rate this album a 7/10.