'Lasers' under Atlantic's full control
Issue date: 3/11/11 Section: Arts & Entertainment
"Lasers" was supposed to be a revolutionary album. After a three and a half year wait, the anticipation was incredibly high, but because of issues with Atlantic, Lupe's sound went from unique to mainstream.
Without the fans, this album may never have seen the light of day. But many fans, myself included, are disappointed in the album after falling in love with Fiasco's initial unique sound. This isn't "Food & Liquor" or "The Cool" - it's an attempt from Atlantic to sell records and take advantage of their artists. And right now, Atlantic is winning. Still, "The Show Goes On" has become a huge hit, and "Words I Never Said" has also had its fair share of success. The album is expected to hit number one this week, which would be a first for Lupe.
But at the end of the day, the fans aren't the only ones that are disappointed. Lupe himself is upset with the product and the process. In an interview with Complex magazine in February, Fiasco said, "When I think about what it took to actually get the record together and everything that I went through on this record - which is something I can't separate - I hate this album. A lot of the songs that are on the album, I'm kinda neutral to. Not that I don't like them, or that I hate them, it's just I know the process that went behind it. I know the sneaky business deal that went down behind this song, or the artist or singer or songwriter who wrote this hook and didn't want to give me this song in the first place."
No Lupe fan would ever expect him to use auto-tune or have tracks featuring pop-star Trey Songz and the current queen of hooks, Skylar Grey. While the label couldn't necessarily control what Lupe said, they were able to control the sound and the process of creating the album as Lupe described to Complex. It's a lot harder to respect the words he says when they're over dancehall records or a sappy, pop-rock record.