“Pledge Allegiance to the Swag” has to be the most poorly timed title I’ve heard in a while. Pledging allegiance to anything was shut down by Mike Bigga years ago and the mere mention of swag these days should stir up those evil black shadows from Ghost to come take your passé ass away. But is this song as bad as the title suggests it will be? Not really, but if I can use this song as a barometer for the quality of track on T.I.’s upcoming album, I might not be as excited for it as I thought.
J.US.T.I.C.E. League laces the king with ominous horror movie ambiance, pulsating digital smears, Omen like choral vocals, old church bells; all that’s missing is the devil himself. The song develops through the chorus as the League adds some thump and more portentous digital noise, but there isn’t a lot of deviation from what’s presented off the rip.
T.I. toggles from Southern slang to perfect articulation King’s English style which validates the idea that he’s been working on taking the Bankhead out of his repertoire. The trap talk isn’t as obvious this go round. There’s a bit of innuendo, but primarily we hear about money, hoes and knuckle heads hanging out who need to step. The growl he adds to the 2nd verse fits the track perfectly, but the content leaves a lot to be desired.
Rozay shrieking his name out at the beginning of his verse is pretty funny. Reminds me of the baby on the E-Trade commercial who thought the pilot was his dad, but I digress. Rozay’s drug banter is in your face. Hollow tips and corners under his control, expensive cars and easy women, it’s all in a day’s work for the Teflon Don. He’s a King and he requires you bow. Now.
T.I. comes back for yet another verse. There’s more money talk. He alludes to the size of his package… oh yeah and he pledges allegiance to his swag. Then he talks the track out. I don’t really know what he said, I stopped listening 2 minutes ago. Did I mention the song is over 7 minutes long? Exactly.
In conclusion, the only thing I took away from this exercise is that this song isn’t close to being good enough to be that damn long. Word on the street is this isn’t the final version. I really hope not.
T.I. Feat. Rick Ross – “Pledge Allegiance To The Grind”
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