Rick Ross has been a busy man making that paper these days.
With his back story grandiose Mastermind providing him with yet another hit, Ross is now forging ahead with next studio album, Hood Billionaire, which is expected to be released by the end of the year.
It don't take a rocket scientist to figure out what the name of his next album would be, he dropped hints of the name in Mastermind, and drops the name of it in the first single released from the album, "Elvis Presley Blvd,' his homage to Memphis, Tennessee, and from the start, you will notice that Hood Billionaire will sound a lot different than Mastermind.
In one respect, "Elvis Presley Blvd." is more of an advertisement than a music video. The track was inspired by Ross opening a Wing-Stop restaurant in Memphis, and the city in turn gave Ross a key to the city. But 'Elvis Presley Blvd." is not completely an advertisement. The track has a harder edge to it, which sounds more like a track off of Port of Miami, than it does in either of the previous two albums he has released, and that gives you a sense that Ross shifting away from the radio ready, accessible rap and return to his roots on Hood Billionaire.
Yes, the lyrics are still so elementary, a three year old can memorize it. In the first two minutes of the songs, he raps "I'm ridin' down Elvis Presley Blvd." like ten times. Dude, we know your riding down Elvis Presley Blvd.! We don't need you to repeat it over and over again.
But what saved the track from slipping into the excess grandiose that has became a staple of Ross' current work was the cameo by Memphis' own Project Pat, who infused the track with his hood-rich, and clever lyrics. Whereas Ross was pop, Pat was straight hood, and it was refreshing to see southern rap return to its roots, even if it was only for a couple of minute. It was great to hear Pat again.
All in all, "Elvis Presley Blvd." was a solid single. It's nothing to really write home about, and it won't win over any new Ross' fans, as his limited vocabulary and lyrical skills still grates the nerves. But the track takes you back to his early days, which should make Ross fans who have grown tired of his recent work excited for Hood Billionaire.