Album Review | Che` Noir – Food for Thought

This album was released on January 21st this year. At one point, Che` Noir was one of the most promising newer artists to me. The Thrill of the Hunt 2 made it into my top 5 albums of 2019, and I still love that album to this day. However, the projects that she’s released since then have unfortunately not been up to snuff. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely enjoyed them to some extent, but they just didn’t blow me away like TotH2 did. Her album with Apollo Brown received a lot of positive reception, but for me it was kinda disappointing. I mean, I thought it was really good. It was just a very traditional, vanilla record. Her lyricism hasn’t been anywhere near as violent as it was on The Thrill of the Hunt 2, and I really miss that hostility that she used to have. I’m also just not the biggest fan of Apollo Brown. With all that said, I’m sure I’ll enjoy this latest project to some extent. I’m not expecting it to be one of my favorite albums of the month, but I’m sure it’ll be good.

The album starts with an intro entitled Eat to Live. I think the production from Cartune Beatz is pretty nice here. The actual content of what Che was saying wasn’t really that interesting to me, but I didn’t mind it at all. She was just talking about what the phrase “food for thought” means to her, which is cool I guess. I think it’s a cool way to set up the album. This is a dope intro. The first actual song is called Split the Bread, and it has one of the best instrumentals on the album from Tricky Trippz. One of the first things I noticed about this track is that Che’s vocal delivery is more expressive than it has been in the past. She sounds a lot more animated here than she usually does. The first verse is really nice. She was rhyming really well. The hook isn’t really anything special to me, but it serves its purpose as a break between the verses. I think the second verse is even better than the first one.

Taught myself the game 'cause everything they teach is racist
I make a month's salary off one feature payment
I kill a rapper with every bar with just a sling like David
The rap game left blood on my hands, so, bitch, I'm finger-paintin'

Overall, I think this is one of the best songs on the album. The production is great, and Che killed the verses. The song is dope. It’s followed by Eat or Starve, which features Jynx716. I unfortunately didn’t really care for this track. I think it’s okay overall, but it’s not something I’m gonna be returning to. I just find Che` Noir’s production to be really dull here. It’s easily my least favorite instrumental on the album. I think the first verse from Che is really good, and Jynx716 did his thing too, but this is kind of a bland track sonically. The repetitive production just gets old really quickly. The rapping is really nice though. It’s an okay song overall. The following track is another skit entitled Daily Bread. This is a really short track in which a bunch of kids recite a prayer before eating. It’s kinda cute, but it’s not something I’m gonna be listening to again. I think it’s a solid skit though. The following song is called Bless the Food.

This one is also produced by Che` Noir, but the beat is thankfully a lot better than that of Eat or Starve. There’s just one verse here, but it’s very good.

These rappers can't get the crown until we give up
Never trust a team member that always agree with you
Or a grown ass woman that's tryna beef with you
Or 40+ niggas still tryna be street niggas

The hook is also pretty solid. I think one more verse could’ve made this song a bit more memorable, but it’s still very good as it is. I like Che’s production a lot, and the rapping is great. The song is very good. Track 6 is called Ladies Brunch, and it’s another one of the better songs on the album in my opinion. This one features 7xvethegenius and Armani Caesar. I’ve never really been that impressed by Armani Caesar personally, but ever since I first heard 7xvethegenius on the deluxe edition of Conway’s From King to a God I’ve thought she was dope as hell. With that said, I actually think Che` Noir had the best verse on this song. She killed this shit.

When I rap my pencil just float or fly
Controlled by my mind, moves by itself, it's like poltergeist
The toughest rapper's bitch, but that's no surprise
These niggas get in front of cops and cough up info, they give me COVID vibes
I spit the coldest rhymes, even before my time was known as nice
They been quotin' my lines since niggas was rockin' frozen spikes
When I was young I fucked with older guys, he gave me roses, wine
Said he can't see me with nobody else, I told him close his eyes

This track has one of my favorite verses from Che on the whole album. I love that line about how she’s the best rapper alive and better than the dead ones too. 7xvethegenius killed the second verse, and Armani’s verse was solid as well. Che definitely had my favorite performance on this track though. She killed it. The track also has some of Che’s best production that I’ve heard from her too. This is easily one of the best songs on the album to me. I think it’s really dope. Track 7 is called Praises, and it’s got a pretty nice instrumental from Chup the Producer. The beat gets kinda old by the time the song is over, but it’s not bad overall. The first verse is very good. The hook on this track kinda sucks, but it’s nowhere near bad enough to ruin the song for me. This is definitely one of the weaker tracks on the album to me, but I did enjoy it to some extent. I would understand if someone told me they didn’t like it that much, but I personally fuck with it. It’s followed by another one of the better songs on the album, Table for 3.

It was really nice to hear from 38 Spesh again. I feel like it’s been forever since I’ve heard him rap. I guess he’s just been focusing more on the production side of things lately, but I’ve always preferred him as an MC to be honest. All of the verses on this track are really good, but this song didn’t really blow me away like I wanted it to. I think some better production definitely could’ve pushed this song to the next level for me. The beat isn’t bad, but it just doesn’t really stand out very much. It’s definitely not the selling point of the song. I think Ransom had the best verse personally, but everyone here rapped pretty well. It’s a dope song. The following track is called Gold Cutlery. This is easily the most disappointing track on the album to me. It’s not a bad song, but it just really let me down. It features Rome Streetz, but he’s unfortunately just relegated to the hook. I have no idea why the fuck anyone would get a Rome Streetz feature and not have him spit a verse, but that’s what happened here. Thankfully, I think Che’s production on this track is actually pretty good, and she rapped really well.

I ate fruit from the money tree right in front of God
Life is like the mother, and Death is the Uncle Tom
I cut ties with backstabbers, they gave me scissors
Been through thick and thin, it's funny how greed can make you thinner

The hook from Rome isn’t really anything special to me, but the production and rapping on this song are good enough to keep the song entertaining. I think it’s a pretty good track overall. It’s followed by Brains for Dinner, which features production from JR Swiftz & Motif Alumni. I really like the beat here, and I love the violent lyricism from Che.

Never do dirt with your bare hands 'cause they dustin' for prints
If anyone witness this crime cut off they tongue and they lips
A appetite for eatin' rappers, turn the beat to raptures
I turn these creeps to Casper, read my lips, all I speak is chapters
Squeeze and blast you, make 'em bleed a bucket, then I bleach you after

I don’t think the hook on this track is that great, but it serves its purpose as a break between the verses well enough. I appreciate that this is the most violent song on the album. It gave me glimpses of the Thrill of the Hunt days. I think it’s another one of the better tracks on the album. I like it more now than I originally did when I first heard it. I think it’s dope. The penultimate track is a skit entitled Water to Wine. I think the production from Cartune Beatz is pretty nice, but I don’t really care about anything that was being said on this track. It’s an okay interlude, but it probably didn’t need to be as long as it is. It’s not something I’m gonna be listening to again in the future, but I’m not gonna pretend to have a huge issue with it being here. It’s okay to me. The closing track is called Communion, and it’s definitely one of the best songs on the album. I think the Church theme is just ever so slightly corny, but it’s definitely well executed. This track probably has my favorite beat on the whole album, and it also has some of Che’s most personal lyricism.

I tend to hide when I grieve
Losin' my brother hurt so much that I cry in my sleep
I'm wakin' up outta my dreams every night in a scream
Tryna find reasons, sheddin' tears, look like my eyes bleedin'

The first verse is really great, and the second one is even better. The way she was rhyming was really dope, and I felt the pain in her lyrics. The song is dope.

This is a good album. It’s definitely my least favorite project that I’ve heard from Che` Noir so far, but I still enjoyed it overall. The production is kinda dull, and none of the hooks are that memorable. The main selling point is just Che’s actual lyricism. There’s not a single wack verse on this project. As I mentioned in the preamble of this review, I’ll always prefer the more violent lyrical style of her Thrill of the Hunt series, but I guess it’s good that she’s not a one trick pony. Still though, I would love to hear a third entry in that series. Anyway, I think she did a really great job of sticking to the whole mental nourishment theme of this project. I don’t know that she’s gonna win over any of her haters with this album because she’s not really doing anything that different. It’s still a very vanilla album. I think it’s very well done though. If you’re into traditional boom bap Hip Hop, this is probably for you. I think it’s dope.

Favorite Song: Communion
Least Favorite Song: Eat or Starve


Grade: B-

Tell me if I'm trippin'

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s