New flavor in the South

We taking this further than the streets, raps Cognito on the first track of his debut album, attempting to express to listeners that they should not expect the average from the Miami native and his crew.

Although the album seems to fall into the stereotypical “money, cars, clothes and chicks” category, it does bring a new flavor to the southern style of rap.

Breaking the barriers of hard-core base filled beats, Cognito adds spice to the already spicy Miami flavor of rap, by using hip-hop beats intertwined with a hard rock sound on two of his songs; “I Wanna be Free” and “I’m Feelin’ Ya”.

He then attempts to break another wall associated with rap music, by revealing his own reality, not that of someone else, with lyrics like: They wanna put me out on shells cause my music too deep and Don’t preach to me homes cause I know the scriptures from “Its Gonna Take a Miracle” and “Its Not You” featuring Slip-N-Slide’s Rick Ross.

The ventures into different styles of music and more revealing lyrics are the plus of this album. The minus is that the rappers’ potential is not obvious for those in search of a new rap star. His potential is hidden in the repetitive and bland beats along with the constant references to hoes, ni–s and money with “been there done that” songs like “Ni–s Won’t Listen”.

The highlights of the album are his dedication to his mother, “I Miss You Momma”, “Goin’ on Remix ” featuring the illustrious Trick Daddy and “I Can’t Change” featuring a new female artist, Odamia, which discusses the rapper’s determination to remain the same no matter what. These songs promise to get play on the radio waves.

Overall, Cognito’s intro into the music industry could have been stronger with the help of superstar producers and a minimal amount of the common references to money, sex, cars …you know the routine. If you fumble through all this somewhere deep down you will find an artist with a good sense of style, uniqueness and actual talent.

Kanya Simon can be reached at