Album Review: Common – The Dreamer/The Believer
With his breakout movie career you would have thought Common didn’t have time to get back to his first love of music. But with the release of his latest album in over three years, he certainly makes up for his absence.
The Dreamer/The Believer gives his fans, old and new, a reason to fall in love with Hip-Hop all over again. The album has an old school basement beat vibe that can still appeal to the new generation. It’s almost as if Common has taken you on a trip back in time to where he began his love affair with Hip-Hop.
The album starts off with an uplifting track, The Dreamer. It has a special treat at the end with Maya Angelou lending her poetic lines to cap off a very encouraging song. The same theme is carried over to his other uplifting songs Blue Sky, Gold, and Lovin I Lost. These reflect what Common has been rhyming about since his album Like Water For Chocolate. They seem to resonate in your spirit and makes you listen to the message he is trying to speak.
Common then takes you back and reminds you he can battle with the best of them with the tracks Ghetto Dreams, featuring Nas and Sweet. These tracks are for you hardcore rap fiends with the gritty rhymes and beats to match.
Celebrate is an upbeat party track that along with the chorus seem to overtake you and can’t help but make you feel good. Windows is another beautifully put track that Common does a good job of putting his poetic verses to a mid-tempo beat. The opening line, “If your eyes are the window to your soul, open eyes bring the cold, if your dreams keep you warm at night, baby just keep them closed” is a simple yet poignant message of the song. The album closes with The Believer, featuring John Legend, and a spoken word poem Pop’s Belief which features his father Lonnie Lyons Sr.
This record is a good example of how someone can uplift and encourage the masses by just rhyming over a good beat. Common has words to move the spirit within you and translate your thinking to make sure that everything will be alright. I say that is an album worth listening to.
Standout Tracks: “Blue Sky”, “Celebrate”, “Windows”
1. The Dreamer ft. Maya Angelou
2. Ghetto Dreams ft. Nas
3. Blue Sky
6. Lovin I Lost
7. Raw (How You Like It)
11. The Believer ft. John Legend
12. Pops Belief