Features | Awards

The Cam'ron's New Album Award

By Clayton Purdom | 18 December 2009

Cam’ron :: Crime Pays
(Diplomat/Asylum; 2009)

Let’s forget about the giddy zeitgeist inversion of “I Hate My Job” or the Clay Purdom-specific appeal of “Get It In Ohio” and zero in on what else Crime Pays, Killa Cam’s sixth album, has to offer: namely, Cam’ron. Because while there is a surplus of great production here, from the chintzy Toomp-swirl of the opening trifecta through the teenage J-Pop fantasia of “Spend the Night,” and while there’s a hot mess of the aforementioned dumb—>stupid bangers scattered about, what Crime Pays really offers is something less soluble. Cam’ron’s got one of the most idiosyncratic and subversively flamboyant flows in post-millennial rap. He’s a disgusting shithead spewing misogynist invective and bored gunplay raps with a cadence that sort of dry-humps the beat and a sense of braggadocio more Tracy Jordan than, you know, T.I. or whatever. Which very marriage (populist gloss to linguistic absurdity) is exactly what disappoints critics and DJs, that he refuses to adhere to either and so continues to create these doomed, weird artifacts of late ’90s pop culture that don’t really fit anywhere, hipster, mainstream or otherwise. But which is also exactly what I want, because it leads to something entirely singular: and that is, another Cam’ron album. Here’s to the new one.