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Given that this album comes after the death of Tedashi’s son in a car crash it’s a miracle that the album sounds as upbeat as it does. It is a testament to the man that he manages to put so much positive energy into the project and balance the album with love songs like “Be With You.”
Tedashi has struggled in his career to make an album that’s consistent from beginning to end. He’s given us some gospel rap classics in his time with tracks like ‘Reverse,’ ‘Dum Dum’ and ‘26’s’ on Blacklight and Identity Crisis respectively.
Below Paradise is a lot more consistent, especially in the early parts of the album. The first half of the album feels a lot more like the quality that we’re used to seeing from his label mate Lecrae. Tedashi can also be proud of the fact that the album doesn’t need Lecrae to reignite it. Often in the past Lecrae’s presence on 116 album’s highlight the gulf in class between Crae and the artist the song actually belongs to.
Tedashi has followed suite with the rest of the 116 cliqueand moved away from the dirty south sound. There’s much more of a pop rock sound here that we were first introduced to on album’s like Rebel with ‘Beautiful Feet’ and then fully on the Rehab album.
Tedashi fans who are able to adapt and grow with him will really enjoy this album. It’s been a 3 year wait but this album is his fourth and best studio album to date. He has a bigger catalogue behind him than AndyMineo and this album stakes his claim for the 2nd place slot in the Reach Records Camp.
Lion Track: Dark Days, Darker Nights
Best Feature: Nothing I Can't Do (Feat Trip Lee and Lecrae)
Rating: 4 Crosses