Joyner Lucas is a rapper from Massachusetts who first blew up with the controversial song called “I’m Not Racist.” The track showed how Joyner could touch on serious issues while telling a conventional story.
Lucas then showed his lyricism by rapping over popular songs such as “DNA,” “Suge” and “Gucci Gang.” In these tracks, he attracted other major artists to collab with him such as Eminem, Chris Brown and Tech n9ne.
His debut album “508-507-2209” shows the potential in Lucas as an artist but fell short due to Lucas not being able to make good commercial songs. Now he releases “ADHD” to show his critics how he has grown as an artist.
The album starts with the skit “Screening Evaluation” where a young Joyner participates in a conversation with his psychologists. In the skit, the psychologist is going through a Rorschach test, showing Joyner pictures while he names what they are. However, when the doctor gets to one image and Joyner gets it wrong, the psychologist gets angry and berates him for his condition. The intro provides context for Joyner’s condition and it leads perfectly into “I Lied”.
“I Lied” discusses Joyner’s old habits and how it sometimes led to consequences. The production sounds good with a hard-hitting trap beat and Joyner’s voice flowing well. Joyner’s flows are always entertaining to hear, and it makes the song easy to enjoy with some nice speakers.
“ISIS” marks the first collaboration between Joyner and Logic who previously had a beef before they made the track. Joyner discusses his issues with ADHD and how it cost him some of his goals. The production on the track is decent with a subpar trap beat and creative acoustics in the background. Joyner's aggressive delivery really meshes well with the beat and it also contrasts well with Logic’s verse. Logic provides a light verse where he talks about the beef between him and Joyner and how they resolved their issues peacefully.
“The War” is an attempt by Joyner to try to tap into his vocal side as he discusses his previous troubles with girls and how he knows what to expect in relationships. However, on this track Joyner sounds lazy with subpar vocals.
His passion while he raps does not translate to singing. Young Thug comes in and delivers a decent verse, however it does not enhance the song at all.
“I Love” is Joyner’s Celebration anthem where he discusses his success and how he loves the position that he is in. Joyner’s performance with his switching between singing and rapping sounds more messy than fluid. His subject also isn’t consistent as he is just talking about his riches instead of focusing on his ADHD.
“Devil’s Work” is an interesting track where Joyner talks about recent deaths in the music industry. His delivery is gritty and aggressive, and it meshes well with the beat. You can hear the passion Joyner raps with, especially towards the end when he starts to name the people who’ve passed away. While impressive, there could have been more verse to the song to make it complete.
“Will” is very impressive, with Joyner referencing Will Smith. Joyner’s flow and lyricism are great with references to Will Smith’s movies. The beat also meshes really well with Joyner’s energy. While the song is great, the music video enhances the song as Joyner switches into the leading roles that Smith has starred as.
Overall “ADHD” is decent at best with some of the songs sounding very similar in content matter. “Lotto”, “Gold Mime” and “10 Bands” basically discuss the same thing: Joyner’s riches. His vocals especially don’t sound good during “The War” when he tries to sound like Ty Dolla $ign.
However, there are some high points where Joyner shows some growth. One would be his flows; instead of using them in one song, he divides them up into different songs. Another positive is the skits, as Kevin Hart and Chris Tucker are featured and give amazing performances on both of them. “ADHD” is decent, but the lack of consistent subject matter hurt Lucas in his sophomore album. 2.5/5