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Tory Lanez - The New Toronto 3 (Album Review)

Popular Canadian rapper/R&B artist Tory Lanez is back with his new album 'The New Toronto 3'. He's been impossible to escape during quarantine due to his Instagram live sessions - and it seems he's banked on the opportunity to then drop an album mid way through the hype. The production on this album for the most part is great - taking either a chilled, lowkey approach or a more dark and sinister approach - which is usually used to represent his life growing up. This eerie production is mainly created by the piano's found throughout and the haunting vocals layered deep in the beat. He's also managed to make sure his 808s aren't generic and boring on this album which is great because a good 808 pattern can carry the beat if needed. Most of, or in fact all of the lyrics on this album are pretty much basic. He doesn't attempt many punchlines or wordplay - but when he does they're either basic or generic. The actually lyricism is poor on this album, with the only redeeming quality being his decent storytelling. When he raps, his delivery is mean - but he isn't always rapping and he has many voices to track on this thing. He goes for a more melodic style at times too, and when he's not going really high pitched reminiscent of Chris Brown and more of a rip off of him, then it sounds nice and smooth. Tory's main focus on this album is his life before fame, living on the dangerous streets of Toronto and what he had to do to get where he is today. Due to him finally making it, we get the classic, generic flexing a lot as well but overall, the key themes on this project add up to good content.

The album begins with the explosive 'Pricey & Spicy' as Tory introduces the key themes of street life and the trap. With slow, piano based instrumentals and a spot on delivery and flow it makes quite the impression on track one. 'The Coldest Playboy' has a pretty bland beat, it serves its purpose of being dark and eerie especially them vocals in the background giving it a sinister feel, but it's pretty generic. Lyrically he's not really basic just more average on this as he discusses making it out the streets again. It's not a bad track but fails to stand out. 'Stupid Again' consists of a catchy hook and a banging beat - but what lets this down is how long the verse is. It's a decent verse, but it goes so long without actually saying anything interesting that I start losing concentration towards the back end of it. Tory talks on not caring what an ex has to say to him on the following track '10 Fucks'. The beat is more laid back with chilled strings and 808s, as Tory 's flow is catchy, smooth and the whole hook is a groove. Mansa however, lets this down because his verse is boring and basic - despite having nice vocals it's just really not memorable. OK, the next track 'Dope Boy's Diary' is just boring I don't have anything to say on it. I genuinely stopped listening halfway through and I promise I never do that - nothing redeeming about it. At least things pick back up on the song 'Accidents Happen' which is decent. Funnily enough to beat is bland but it's the two rappers who save the track. Tory's flow is good, while Lil Tjay actually had a nice flow and his usually stale melodic delivery, is pretty entertaining here as the duo carry the beat.

'Broke In A Minute' is one of my favourites on this album. The brass melody and 808s collide well to make a banging beat as Tory's flow keep this entertaining as he effortlessly glides over it. Tory also provides us with fun, bouncy energy which helps to keep me interested in this verse the whole time despite its lyrical setbacks. At the halfway point of the album we reach 'P.A.I.N'. It's a decent song but again I lost interest during this song because the verses just aren't lyrical enough to keep you interested when they're that long. The hook is great, the hurt and desperate tone in his voice adds up to great effect over this big, grand beat. 'Adidas' is a key highlight on this album as once again Tory discusses his come up. The track is pretty emotional and his flow is fire over this pretty good beat consisting of a guitar and harmonised vocals giving it a chill, lowkey vibe. 'Who Needs Love' is a top tier track on the album, and the subject matter as the title suggests is who needs love when you've got money. The melody on the hook is catchy, and the vocals are great while the sliding 808s and guitar collab to make a brilliant, laid back beat. One of the singles leading up to this project 'Do The Most' follows its predecessor nicely and again is a top tier track on the album. The contrast between the low tone of the hook and the high tone of the verses collide well, giving this track an extra catchy element. The beat as well is great, has a right R&B groove to it. Tory talks on a girl in his life on 'Penthouse Red' is a bit of a tasteless track with boring verses and a bland guitar-based beat. The hook is alright and I suppose is the only redeeming quality of the track.

Things pick back up with 'Letter to the City 2' where Tory's smooth flow is once again on show partnered by his mean delivery. He reveals some interesting information in this track, specifically talking on benny blanco and his label troubles with Tory over a hard piano and sliding 808s which sounds great. 'Back in Business' is a meh track, but the epic, orchestral beat is amazing, it's just too slow moving during the verse and has the common issue of me losing attention on it easily. 'D.N.D.' stands for do not disturb, and has the very simple message of do not disturb him. Again the beat is great but Tory's performance makes it another meh/mid song on the album. The project finishes on a high with 'MSG 4 GOD'S CHILDREN' as Tory talks on his religious beliefs over a deep synth bass and more harmonising vocals. It works as an outro, and is an alright track.

To conclude this project, a lot of the ideas are the same and it results in a few tracks sounding similar - I suppose what I mean is it doesn't need it's 44 minute run time it has. When he raps it sounds great, the R&B sound can be great too when he doesn't come off as a Chris Brown parody. There's a lot of good songs on this project that'll be in rotation but there's also a few mid to boring songs too. The second half is definitely more enjoyable and consistent, and overall it equates to a decent project from Tory Lanez.

FAVOURITE TRACKS: Pricey & Spicy, Broke In A Minute, Adidas, Who Needs Love, Do the Most, Letter to the City 2


OVERALL RATING: Solid 6.5/10

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