The comments made by Curtis Jackson (a.k.a 50 Cent) preceding the release of his latest album, “Curtis,” indicate that he’s stressed out. His big talk about halting recording if Kanye West beat him in sales just shows that America’s favorite Candy Shop gangster feels threatened by his “non-confrontational” teddy bear friend.
One look at the album photograph gives the impression that he’s been pulling all-nighters for months working on a dissertation in hip-hop dominance. Is this a plea for sympathy? Yes, probably.
(More after the jump)
It’s clear that 50 Cent is a rapper striving to hold on to former and fleeting glory. His insistence on deriding Kanye should have been enough to reveal his insecurity, but then his retracting those comments only made his character more pathetic. Since it’s sometimes true that fractal-like, small components resemble the whole, it might be useful to talk about one song in particular from “Curtis.” The fourth single 50 Cent released, a track known as “Ayo Technology,” exposes his struggle.
Originally this song was called “Ayo Pornography,” and it’s easy to see why. It concerns, essentially, a talented stripper, whose assets 50 Cent and Justin Timberlake praise in rap and song. They are frustrated with “using technology” (high-powered telescopes? night-vision goggles?) to observe this girl, and all they want is to have graphic sex with her undulating body.
The song describes sex in every euphemistic way without ever being explicit about it, and so it ends up being just a meaningless string of dirty-sounding proclamations. The video is almost hilarious, as slowly panning shots of 50 and JT are cut by green-tinted close-ups of boobs pushing out of bras, reminiscent of the Paris Hilton sex tape.
Like 50 Cent’s threats to Kanye West, the song is shocking without ever actually saying anything. And Timberlake’s contributions make 50’s obvious lyrics all the more comical. Timberlake rhymes things like “Baby, you’re so New Age” with “Maybe we can start a new phase.” Who knew that Justin Timberlake preferred his strippers to have an advanced knowledge of the occult?
If 50 wants to rap about sex, that’s fine, but he should really try to avoid the vague lyrics and paint-by-numbers beat (courtesy of Timbaland) that condemn this fourth single to absolute banality.