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Tory Lanez – ‘Chixtape 5’ review: the rapper samples countless classics to create peerless R&B nostalgia

The Canadian artist's 'Chixtape' series continues, reworking old favourites to craft a record that almost stands alone on its own feel-good terms

You can revel in the simpler times with Tory Lanez’s new record, ‘Chixtape V’. This fifth instalment of the fan-favourite mixtape series interpolates and samples more classic R&B tunes to get us out of our winter blues. And Tory definitely shows off his prowess in the scene with this piece.

He gets all the late ’90s and early noughties babies excited with timeless songs that create instant nostalgia. But what heightens this excitement is all the original artists laying reworked verses on the same tracks. For instance:  Lanez revives two noughties smashes, ‘I Luv Your Girl’ and ‘Falsetto’, with The-Dream himself, while one of the best collaborations comes in the form of Trey Songz‘s ‘Still Waiting’.

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Delivering the classic love song ‘Can’t Help But Wait‘ with a modern twist, Trey and Tory sing over a muted bassline and the original feathery note progression. Relaying the same story of unrequited love, Tory manages to reworks the pre-chorus (“And I don’t wanna come between you and your man…“) with more conviction and affirmation: “I know I treat you better than your man, yeah, fuck that n***a / Tryna treat you better than he can“.

And that’s not the only song on which Tory Lanez shows off his sexual prowess and confidence. With a serene, lo-fi interpretation of Pretty Ricky’s single ‘Your Body‘, ‘Yessir’ follows the same unabashed, bragging tones of the original. But, staying true to himself, Lanez is emotionally unavailable – as he says with a little tongue-in-cheek humour: I’m a ho-fessional when it come to a b*tch / ‘Cause I ain’t cuffin’ nothin’, baby, I just passed the b*tch”.

But the album’s best song is the single ‘Jerry Sprunger’, which features T-Pain. The fun interpolation of Pain’s ‘I’m Sprung‘ has you thinking back to all those summers spent outside, playing in the park. It reminds you of the times you ran for the ice-cream van – and ice-cream subsequently dribbling down your hand. And with Tory’s modern twist, ‘Jerry Sprunger’ is just as good as the original. Those infamous “do-do” adlibs are the definition of feel-good; you’re dared not to grin from ear-to-ear as you soak up the nostalgia.

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Selecting a few old R&B bangers, he’s created some tracks that will be on playlists for years to come. Tory Lanez has modernised cult hits that are, in some cases, nearly two decades old. And despite the use of these classics, the album still feels like his own. It could almost – almost – become a standalone staple of R&B culture.

Details

  • Release date: November 15
  • Record label: Mad Love / Interscope Records
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