Singled Out: I Got The Keys (Review)

I Got The Keys is the latest single from DJ Khaled. It features an extremely interesting combination of both JAY Z and Future. What’s hilarious about this song is that this is something modern day hip hop heads have dreaded. Those that absolutely despise Future must be cleaning up the mess of their brains exploding, as Jay has just given him validity. Whatever your opinion of the combo may be, both the song and the video are going to be iconic, and mark traditions of times to come. Today, we’re singling out I Got The Keys.

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Well, I’ll be honest with you folks, this one was a bummer. I wanted to like this. I wanted this to be the crossover that proved the new wave and the old wave can collaborate, and their merits would both be obvious. Unfortunately, we got neither of these things. This song reminded me that Jay is fallible. It reminded me that he can absolutely be terrible and under cooked on songs. It happens so infrequently that I was almost caught off guard by how little I liked this song. I listened to it over and over again hoping it would grow on me. I was thinking that eventually I’d have that click of resonance that I have a lot of Future songs, but I think they’re just misused.

For a few years, HOV hasn’t been making bangers. He’s been making music you sip whiskey and smoke cigars too. I like that Jay. I think that the classier HOV is the one that has a better sound, and ultimately makes for a better final product. This one feels rushed to market, under done, and a little bit like pandering. I’m not sure if this was meant to galvanize fans. The truth of the matter is that this song could’ve simply been used to garner hype for Jay’s rumored project that is supposed to be released sometime this year. Regardless of that however, I expected more. I expected Jay to sign off on something that was going to have more flair, more pomp and circumstance. This is not that.

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The video does do a bit more for me, as the visuals that are shown try to send a message. Unfortunately, the message is a bit muddled behind the trap beat and awful bars, but there is some kind of a message there. I’ll be honest with you, I’m not sure exactly what it is, as it touches on police brutality, prison culture, and black pride. While I definitely respect the idea, and respect that they’re bold enough to try to send some kind of a message, this song definitely doesn’t feel like the one to do it on.

Production is solid, but ultimately doesn’t fit Jay. Booming base and a Future hook repeating something as simple as “I got the keys, the keys, the keys” is standard Future fanfare. The most disappointing aspect of this song in general is that HOV feels like he doesn’t want to be there. It feels like he signed on just to get Khaled off his back, and the final project shows this. Ultimately, if you’re looking to hear something in the clubs, this one might get a bit of play. If you’re looking for something a bit more personal and stylized for your listening, this one is definitely not for you.

Photos are used for purely review purposes and are not owned by CulturED World. All credit goes to their original owners and copyright holders. Use of these photos is protected by the Fair Use Act.

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