But does the song at No. 17 get just a little too high?
Not quite sure where we’re at in terms of the Lil Wayne hype-to-hate-and-back-again cycle at the moment, and you know, who cares? But hey, if we’re going to celebrate a guy who’s (contentiously) made “druggy”/”outre” references his reason for rapping, we might as well nominate the droopy weirdness of “I Feel Like Dying” as his best mixtape moment of the year, where Weezy rolls up the crowd-pleasing pop cultural allusions and smokes them in favor of doing the backstroke in a “sea of codeine” and crushing pretenders to the throne under his neon cleats on a “marajuana field,” a woozy, extended pharmacological mash note/riff on the joys of a well-stocked medicine cabinet. You may balk at the “best rapper alive” boasts; I don’t quite buy the line that Da Drought 3 is the best thing to happen to metaphor in the 21st-century so far; and Wayne’s reach will have to be reassessed if and when Tha Carter 3 ever drops. But I can’t deny his prolix efforts at self-canonization made me happier than any other rapper this year. (Also: there’s something so right about this fan-made video having Wayne’s voice coming out of the mouth of Gollum from Lord Of The Rings.)