Nicki Minaj’s ‘The Pinkprint’: Review Revue

Bradley Stern | December 15, 2014 10:44 am
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With her latest studio album The Pinkprint (out this week), Nicki Minaj has laid out the blue — err, pinkprint for all the female rappers who come after her. (Her words, not ours!) Led by her Dr. Luke slow-burner “Pills N Potions” and the all-out A$$ attack of “Anaconda,” critics weren’t quite sure what to expect from Minaj’s third outing.

Here at Idolator, we gave the album 4 out of 5 stars, declaring it her best album: “Rap and pop are no longer how she relays her bipolar tendencies. Instead, somewhat miraculously, the now-comatose Nicki shows that these two genres, with their warring gendered expectations (pop scanning as ‘feminine,’ rap as ‘masculine’) can peacefully co-exist in this lonely, gently whirring universe that exists here, her first breakup album.” But what did critics around the world have to say about Nicki’s newest record?

Check out all the latest reviews after the jump.

:: LA Times awarded the album 3 out of 4 stars, praising the album’s introspective turn: “Rather than fully keep her promise, the artist on The Pinkprint focuses on behind-the-curtain heartbreak ballads before moving into that unfiltered swagger. Enduring the end of a long-term love affair in her personal life, Minaj channels her emotions into as many slow-rolling explorations of love and regret as boasts about prowess, bank balance and flow.”

:: The Atlantic similarly praised Nicki’s unexpected soul-baring on the new LP: “…This isn’t a hardcore hip-hop record. It’s also not a pure pop record. This is a wig-free confessional statement, sans bizarre alter egos with weird accents. (Farewell, Roman Zolanski! We won’t miss you.) This is an introduction not to Nicki Minaj, but to the woman behind the work, Onika Maraj.”

:: The Verge found value in Nicki’s latest LP as a symbol of her importance in the music industry: “The Pinkprint, like Nicki’s mini-trills, feels like a diligent personal exercise — its subject matter and overall effect are transitional, not definitive (as she’s claimed herself in pre-release interviews). Compared with the highly stylized performances of her first and second records, her third feels downright athletic, like a stretching routine. While it may not be quite iconic, it’s still an effective reminder of just how invaluable Minaj is, not just as a rapper and artist but also as an unapologetic, brilliantly nuanced public figure.”

:: New York Daily News was a bit more critical, giving the album 3 out of 5 stars: “Disappointingly, “Pink” hasn’t taken Minaj further into the surreality that first promised to turn her into Missy Elliott to the 10th power. But there’s no denying the album’s catchiness. And in terms of growth, “The Pink Print” goes a long way towards making Minaj’s character as fully rounded as her figure.”

:: And finally, Stereogum ultimately praised the record in their first listen: “The Pinkprint has its problems, but its great moments are triumphant, and its weak ones are still somehow revelatory. It’s a pop album that demands serious thought, one made with serious feeling. It might not be the Nicki Minaj album we wanted, but it’s the one she needed. Maybe it’s the one we needed, too.”

Llet us know what you think of the album in the comments below.