Capsule Review: “Thr33 Ringz” by T-Pain

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November 18, 2008

12:48 AM

T-Pain, the man you’ve probably heard in everybody else’s songs, from Flo Rida’s “Low” to Lil Wayne’s “Got Money,” released his third album, aptly titled “Thr33 Ringz.” If you’re one to judge a book, or an album, by its cover, you would probably deem this CD one of the best of this century. The album artwork is utterly mind-blowing.

Once you pick up your jaw off the ground and actually listen to the CD, you realize that it’s still the T-Pain we’ve come to love (or hate) — the man who wears top hats instead of baseball caps. But this time he’s taken everything to a whole new level. What were formerly throwaway punch lines are now full-length songs. “Chopped N Skrewed” deals with getting treated poorly by a woman at a nightclub. In “Phantom,” a track included in the deluxe edition, he raps for three-and-a-half minutes about talking to his ex-girlfriend. The powerful “Karaoke,” on the other hand, calls out to all the artists criticizing him for his use of Autotune, as well as the artists abusing Autotune themselves. He raps, instead of singing, to show the rappers what it feels like to be copied.

“Thr33 Ringz,” for its creative presentation, is as bizarre as the circus that seems to be going on in T-Pain’s mind. One of the lines in “Ringleader Man” works perfectly to explain why this album seems so abnormal: “You can’t understand the shit that comes out of my head.”

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