Reason may want to rethink his claim that J. Cole’s highly-anticipated upcoming project, The Fall Off, will best his former Top Dawg Entertainment labelmate Kendrick Lamar and his Grammy Award-winning album Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers.
Walking that back a bit, Reason revealed his belief that J. Cole will regain the edge as the biggest Hip-Hop artist in the world upon the release of his new record following a tumultuous week of promotion for his Porsches album. So in essence, yes, Reason appeared to make this hot take the same week he and TDE record label President Moosa exchanged words during a livestream podcast, but now it wasn’t made with ill intent.
Prepare for even more context; what Reason said, or what I believe he said from what I understand, is that both Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole have engaged in a calculated game of cat and mouse over the years as they chase each other to and from the pinnacle of the rap game. Where Reason appears to give J. Cole the edge over Kendrick Lamar is solely within the department of activity—not to be mistaken for consistency. Essentially, the Carson native said that Cole’s constant activity on features and such will likely propel him into yet another stratosphere of rap stardom once The Fall Off drops.
To make it abundantly clear, Reason even made the point to explicitly state he doesn’t believe J. Cole is better than Kendrick Lamar but rather the work speaks for itself. And it does, so to speak—I mean, Cole is out here collaborating with K-Pop superstar and BTS frontman J Hope while simultaneously executive producing records with Mike WiLL Made-It and helming Dreamville. Reason was certainly logically engaged and emotionally dejected while navigating this debate and a look at the data at-a-glance proves it.
However, that fair old eye test never fails! Not even a full five days after Reason made the claim during his recent podcast appearance, K. Dot once again proved why he’s one of the few artists who can make his legions of fans wait nearly five years between projects—and somehow still compel them to worship and buy into the replay value of the music upon arrival and for years to come.
His proving ground? A live performance in Osaka, Japan, where the roar of the audience singing his “N95” hit word-for-word nearly drown out Kendrick Lamar’s own belabored vocals. More than a year after its release, this album still has an insane grip on the airwaves worldwide. Can the same be said about J. Cole’s 2021 album The Off-Season, more over, will the same be said about The Fall-Off?
I’m not Sway, so I don’t have the answers, but check out the insane clip below and try to see if you can guess the ballpark of how many folks were in the crowd.