Troubadour

Metascore
74

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Troubadour is thoroughly enjoyable and immediately accessible. It is not as emotionally powerful as its predecessor, but it does continue to show a talented artist that isn’t afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve.
  2. Unfortunately, this big-tent spirit also occasionally dilutes some of the elements that made K'naan's debut so striking.
  3. His richly detailed rhymes are part of a more pop-centric stew, and the special guests (Mos Def, Damian Marley, Maroon 5's Adam Levine) make the recipe seem a little overcooked.
  4. Troubadour, the Somali-born artist's follow-up to his great debut, is a smart fusion of influences.
  5. 70
    Whether he’s lamenting immigration hassles or imagining himself a depressed American kid fighting in Iraq, this Muslim fan of Biggie and Bruce Lee has a common touch. He’s a universal soldier, not an exotic novelty.
  6. Filter
    64
    K'Naan is one of the realest cats going, and although Troubadour feels somewhat derivative, you should at least agree when he notes, "It's OK to feel good." [Holiday 2008, p.100]
  7. Those elements ring so true for K’naan that it feels like a distraction when he turns to high-profile guests like the Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett (on 'If Rap Gets Jealous') and the Maroon 5 singer Adam Levine (on 'Bang Bang').
  8. Like M.I.A.'s two CDs, Troubadour is Westernized but never compromises its heritage.
  9. K'Naan's singular take on the parallels between Africa and America is the strongest thread running through this diverse, socially alert and frequently brilliant sophomore disc.
  10. Musically, it has only a few elements, but are arranged well, a simplicity the lesser often veer into undeveloped blandness.
  11. After what K'naan has been through, bless him for trying--the ebullience he extracts from a life much tougher than North Americans can know is worthy of soukous, mbaqanga, the highlife of Ghana's most punishing inflationary spiral.
User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 26 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 8
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 8
  3. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. Jan 10, 2016
    9
    ingenious album, with a lot of styles in it, trom the hip-hop, reggae, neo soul and the afrobeat. The 90% of the songs are beautiful, the bestingenious album, with a lot of styles in it, trom the hip-hop, reggae, neo soul and the afrobeat. The 90% of the songs are beautiful, the best are "Wavin' Flag", "If Rap Gets Jealous", "ABCs" and "T.I.A.". I think that this album deserves more popularity, a masterpiece of the modern music Full Review »
  2. Nov 15, 2010
    10
    So yeah, after 2 months of spending time with this album, listening each and every song to death, I still love the album. That says all i haveSo yeah, after 2 months of spending time with this album, listening each and every song to death, I still love the album. That says all i have to say about this album. Unlike those 99% rappers who rap about **** this guy raps about life--about miserable life being lived by millions all over the earth. Each and every song brings with it a new story--and its all really well done. Not one song has disappointed me. I extremely recommend this album. Massively underrated! Full Review »
  3. Nedo
    Mar 12, 2009
    9
    Excellent album K'Naan takes a left turn form the traditional hip hip lyrics and sounds of today and stays true to his intelligent Excellent album K'Naan takes a left turn form the traditional hip hip lyrics and sounds of today and stays true to his intelligent sounds and style while tying in hip hop with, rock, reggae, and African sounds the result is something that appeals to the true masses I give it a 9 because i believe his best work is yet to come keep doing your thing K'Naan. Full Review »