Battle of the Sexes (album)

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Battle of the Sexes
Studio album by Ludacris
Released March 9, 2010
Recorded 2008–2010
Genre Hip hop
Length 61:52
Label DTP, Def Jam
Producer Christopher "Ludacris" Bridges (exec.), Chaka Zulu (exec.), Jeff Dixon (exec.), T-Minus, Bangladesh, Swizz Beatz, The Neptunes, The Runners, Xcel, The Legendary Traxster, DJ Montay, B Crucial & Tony Dinero, Kajun, Goldman Stacks, Infinity, Khao, Gaggie
Ludacris chronology
Theater of the Mind
(2008)
Battle of the Sexes
(2010)
Ludaversal
(2015)
Singles from Bacttle of the Sexes
  1. "How Low"
    Released: December 8, 2009
  2. "My Chick Bad"
    Released: February 23, 2010
  3. "Sex Room"
    Released: May 18, 2010[1]
  4. "Everybody Drunk"
    Released: September 24, 2010[2]

Battle of the Sexes is the eighth studio album by American rapper Ludacris, released March 9, 2010 on Disturbing tha Peace and Def Jam Recordings. It was intended to serve as a collaboration album between Ludacris and rapper Shawnna, but proved to be a solo album by the former after Shawnna left Disturbing tha Peace in 2009. The album was recorded during 2008 to 2010 and its production was handled by several producers, including T-Minus, Bangladesh, Swizz Beatz, The Neptunes, and The Runners. Upon its release, Battle of the Sexes received generally positive reviews from most music critics.

Conception[edit]

Background[edit]

Originally due in 2009, Battle of the Sexes was tagged as a collaboration album by Ludacris and label-mate Shawnna.[3] A promotional single titled "Everybody Drunk" which features vocals from Shawnna was released in April 2009.[4] Shawnna reportedly split from Disturbing tha Peace in 2009 and signed to Nappy Boy Entertainment. It was later reported that Shawnna was removed from the album and became a solo album by Ludacris with guest appearances.[5]

Recording[edit]

It was reported in 2008 that recording for the album had started.[6] After Shawnna was removed, Ludacris stated that he still wanted the album to highlight different view points from males and females, so he recorded tracks with Nicki Minaj, Lil' Kim, Eve,[7] Trina, Shawnna, Ciara, Ne-Yo, Monica,[8] Flo Rida and Gucci Mane.[9] Pharrell has been recording with Ludacris and will contribute production and vocals.[10] It was confirmed in mid-2009 and in early 2010 that Bangladesh, Swizz Beatz and J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League had all contributed production to the album.[3][9]

Release and promotion[edit]

After several projected release dates, the album was finally released on March 9, 2010 through Disturbing tha Peace and its distributing label Def Jam Recordings.[11]

In April 2009, Ludacris released a promotional single for the album, titled "Everybody Drunk", which featured Shawnna. The single failed to chart, and though it appears on the album, the album version features new Disturbing tha Peace signee Lil Scrappy, instead of Shawnna. Official promotion for the album began when Ludacris debuted the first single "How Low" on October 10, 2009, when he performed it at the 2009 BET Hip-Hop Awards.[12] It was made available for digital download on iTunes in December 2009.[13] Ludacris next released three remixes to United States radio stations help promote the song. One of which features Ciara and Pitbull was made available on iTunes on February 9, 2010. He has also filmed a video for the album's second official single, "My Chick Bad" with female rapper Nicki Minaj, and the remix, which featured Eve, Diamond,and Trina.[12] Shawnna provides "additional vocals" on the songs "I Do It All Night", "BOTS Radio" (featuring I-20), "Feelin' So Sexy", and the bonus track "Rollercoaster" (featuring Dru Hill).[14]

Singles[edit]

Apart from its official singles, "Hey Ho", which features Lil' Kim and Lil Fate, was released as a promotional single prior to the release of the album on February 16, 2010 as part of iTunes' countdown to Battle of the Sexes.[15]

  • "How Low" was released as the first official single on December 8, 2009. It became a huge mainstream success, peaking at number six in the United States. It went on to achieve double platinum status.
  • "My Chick Bad", which features Nicki Minaj, was released as the second official single on February 23, 2010.[16] This single was also a big success, peaking at #11 in the United States and later going platinum.
  • In September 2010, Billboard announced that "Everybody Drunk" with Lil Scrappy, is due out soon and will be tied into promotion of Conjure, the cognac brand he launched last year with the Norwegian distillery Birkedal Hartmann.[2] The video was released on September 24, 2010.[18]

Reception[edit]

Commercial performance[edit]

The album debuted at number one on Billboard 200, selling 137,300 copies in its first week. This makes it Ludacris' fourth #1 album.[19] In its second week, it dropped to #2, selling 61,200 copies. In its third week, the album dropped to #6, moving 45,000 units. In its fourth week the album sold 40,000 units. The fifth week it sold 25,000 more copies. It has spent six straight weeks at the top of the Top Rap Albums chart. As of September 2010, the album has sold over 530,000 copies to date.[20] The album was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America in June 2010.[21]

Critical response[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[22]
The A.V. Club B+[23]
Entertainment Weekly B−[24]
Los Angeles Times 2.5/4 stars[25]
Newsday B[26]
NOW 1/5 stars[27]
RapReviews (5.5/10)[28]
USA Today 2.5/4 stars[29]
The Washington Post mixed[30]
XXL 4/5 stars (XL)[31]

Upon its release, the album received generally positive reviews from most music critics, based on an aggregate score of 68/100 from Metacritic.[32] Allmusic writer David Jeffries gave it 3 out of 5 stars and viewed it as a "porno-style album", stating "Limited and a little patched together, but if cheap thrills are what you’re after, this one puts the dirty back in dirty south".[22] The A.V. Club '​s Nathan Rabin viewed its "R&B heavy" material as a weakness, but gave the album a B+ rating and praised Ludacris's lyricism, writing "Ludacris remains an underrated lyricist with unparalleled verbal dexterity. His liquid flow crams an awful lot of polysyllabic words into even the tawdriest sex jam, and no rapper alive conveys joy as effortlessly or infectiously".[23] Giving it 2½ out of 4 stars, Los Angeles Times critic August Brown called Battle of the Sexes "another welcome occasion to listen to Luda enjoying the real love of his life -- the sound of his own voice", and described its music as "fizzy pillow talk and respectfully tawdry club fodder".[25] Despite viewing Ludacris's lyrics as from the male perspective, USA Today '​s Elysa Gardner commended him for his humor and wrote that the album is "more appealing, and more artful, when Ludacris directs his crude, breezy rhymes where they're best suited: into unabashed displays of loopy lust and boneheaded bravado".[29] XXL writer Rondell Conway gave Battle of the Sexes an XL rating and shared a similar sentiment, stating "Luda may not have evened the playing field, but he certainly created an excellent musical forum for the sexes to air out their differences".[31] Newsday '​s Glenn Gamboa gave the album a B rating and commended Ludacris for his musical balance, writing "Not only does Luda know when a song needs an R&B crooner or a female voice, he knows when he needs to speed up a flow or rough up a rhyme".[26]

However, Sarah Godfrey of The Washington Post found its "sexed-up, party-oriented music - catchy but hardly groundbreaking" and viewed the female lyrical perspective as minimal, stating "There is plenty of fun happening on  '​Battle of the Sexes '​, but still, the fellas clearly run it; the ladies are hardly even given a chance".[30] NOW '​s Jason Richards gave the album 1 out of 5 stars and wrote "Battle seems like an opportunity for the rapper to be more ignorant than ever".[27] HipHopDX writer Kathy Iandoli gave it 2½ out of 5 stars and shared a similar sentiment, calling it "an idea that lost momentum somewhere in the middle of its inception, and the result is a haphazard collection of cuts with no clear direction".[33] Jesal Padania of RapReviews gave Battle of the Sexes a 5.5/10 rating and perceived its lyrics as "instantly forgettable".[28] The Harvard Crimson '​s Araba A. Appiagyei-Dankah gave it 2½ out of 5 stars and wrote "When the album remembers to be a “battle” rather than an endless string of mildly memorable dance tunes and awkward sex songs, it presents a one-sided and misogynistic view of women".[34] Despite noting that "there really isn't much of a battle at all", Exclaim! '​s Neil Acharya commended Ludacris for his performance on the album, stating "he seems content to do what he does best: make a pretty run-of-the-mill topic enjoyable with his off-kilter humour and exceptional flow".[35] The Boston Globe writer Ken Capobianco called it "a riotous, raucous set" and wrote favorably of Ludacris's "good-humoured" lyrics.[36] Entertainment Weekly '​s Simon Vozick-Levinson gave Battle of the Sexes a B- rating and expressed a mixed response towards its themes, but commended Ludacris for his rapping, stating "his gymnastic flow and irrepressible personality redeem more tracks than not".[24]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Producer(s) Length
1. "Intro"   Xcel 1:28
2. "How Low"   T-Minus 3:21
3. "My Chick Bad" (featuring Nicki Minaj) The Legendary Traxster 3:36
4. "Everybody Drunk" (featuring Lil Scrappy) DJ Montay 4:10
5. "I Do It All Night"   B Crucial, Tony Dinero 4:41
6. "Sex Room" (featuring Trey Songz) Kajun 5:30
7. "I Know You Got a Man" (featuring Flo Rida and Ester Dean) Infinity 4:03
8. "Hey Ho" (featuring Lil' Kim and Lil Fate) Khao 4:12
9. "Party No Mo'" (featuring Gucci Mane) Bangladesh 4:21
10. "B.O.T.S. Radio" (featuring I-20) The Runners 4:56
11. "Can't Live with You" (featuring Monica) Khao 4:19
12. "Feelin' So Sexy"   Gaggie 3:29
13. "Tell Me a Secret" (featuring Ne-Yo) Swizz Beatz 4:18
14. "My Chick Bad" (Remix) (featuring Diamond, Trina and Eve) The Legendary Traxster 3:23
15. "Sexting" (Bonus Track) The Neptunes 4:43
Sample credits

Charts[edit]

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (2010) Peak
position
Canadian Albums Chart 17
Swiss Albums Chart[37] 82
UK R&B Albums Chart[38] 14
UK Albums Chart 58
US Billboard 200 1
US Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums 1
US Billboard Top Rap Albums 1

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (2010) Position
US Billboard 200 45[39]

Chart procession and succession[edit]

Preceded by
Need You Now by Lady Antebellum
U.S. Billboard 200 number-one album
March 27, 2010
Succeeded by
Need You Now by Lady Antebellum
Preceded by
Still Standing by Monica
U.S. Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums number-one album
April 3, 2010
Succeeded by
Raymond v. Raymond by Usher

References[edit]

  1. ^ "®R&R :: Going For Adds™ :: Rhythmic". Gfa.radioandrecords.com. 2010-05-18. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  2. ^ a b http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/956487/ludacris-scratching-surface-on-new-album-ludaversal
  3. ^ a b Ludacris & Shawnna Prepare for ‘Battle’. Rap-Up.
  4. ^ Atlanta MC Ludacris Trades Lyrical Blows With Shawnna On Battle Of The Sexes. MTV News.
  5. ^ Ludacris’ Battle Of The Sexes Lives On After Shawnna. Hip-hop DX.
  6. ^ Ludacris: Audio Cinematic. Hip-hop DX.
  7. ^ Ludacris & Shawnna Reportedly Part Ways, "Battle Of The Sexes" Album To Move Forward. SOHH.
  8. ^ Ludacris Promises "Battle Of The Sexes" LP Still On Deck, "Ne-Yo Is On There Representing For The Dudes" [Video]. SOHH.
  9. ^ a b Ludacris Spars with Female Rappers on ‘Battle of the Sexes’. Rap-Up. Retrieved 2010-01-25
  10. ^ Ludacris and Pharrell In The Studio. Island Def Jam.
  11. ^ "Battle Of The Sexes: Ludacris: Music". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  12. ^ a b BET Recap: Nicki Minaj Kills & Luda's 'How Low Can U Go'.[dead link]
  13. ^ Ludacris - How Low iTunes.
  14. ^ "Ludacris’ ‘Battle of the Sexes’ Production Credits". Rap-Up.com. 2010-02-20. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  15. ^ iTune's Countdown to Battle of the Sexes. iTunes.
  16. ^ "Urban/UAC Future Releases | R&B, Hip Hop, Release Schedule and Street Dates |". Allaccess.com. Archived from the original on 19 July 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  17. ^ "®R&R :: Going For Adds™ :: Urban". Gfa.radioandrecords.com. 2010-04-20. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  18. ^ "Video: Ludacris f/ Lil Scrappy – ‘Everybody Drunk’". Rap-Up.com. 2010-09-24. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  19. ^ "Latest Music News, Band, Artist, Musician & Music Video News". Billboard.com. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  20. ^ by J-23 (2010-09-08). "Hip Hop Album Sales: The Week Ending 9/5/2010 | Get The Latest Hip Hop News, Rap News & Hip Hop Album Sales". HipHop DX. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  21. ^ "RIAA – Searchable Database". RIAA. June 4, 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-11. 
  22. ^ a b Jeffries, David. Review: Battle of the Sexes. Allmusic. Retrieved on 2010-03-10.
  23. ^ a b Rabin, Nathan. Review: Battle of the Sexes. The A.V. Club. Retrieved on 2010-03-18.
  24. ^ a b Vozick-Levinson, Simon. Review: Battle of the Sexes. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved on 2010-03-10.
  25. ^ a b Brown, August. Review: Battle of the Sexes. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved on 2010-03-09.
  26. ^ a b Gamboa, Glenn. Review: Battle of the Sexes. Newsday. Retrieved on 2010-03-18.
  27. ^ a b Richards, Jason. Review: Battle of the Sexes. NOW. Retrieved on 2010-03-18.
  28. ^ a b Padania, Jesal. Review: Battle of the Sexes. RapReviews. Retrieved on 2010-03-09.
  29. ^ a b Gardner, Elysa. Review: Battle of the Sexes. USA Today. Retrieved on 2010-03-09.
  30. ^ a b Godfrey, Sarah. Review: Battle of the Sexes. The Washington Post. Retrieved on 2010-03-09.
  31. ^ a b Conway, Rondell. Review: Battle of the Sexes. XXL. Retrieved on 2010-03-18.
  32. ^ Battle of the Sexes (2010): Reviews. Metacritic. Retrieved on 2010-03-11.
  33. ^ Iandoli, Kathy. Review: Battle of the Sexes. HipHopDX. Retrieved on 2010-03-09.
  34. ^ Appliagyei-Dankah, Araba A. Review: Battle of the Sexes. The Harvard Crimson. Retrieved on 2010-05-16.
  35. ^ Acharya, Neil. Review: Battle of the Sexes. Exclaim!. Retrieved on 2010-03-09.
  36. ^ Capobianco, Ken. Review: Battle of the Sexes. The Boston Globe. Retrieved on 2010-05-16.
  37. ^ "Ludacris - Battle Of The Sexes - Music Charts". Acharts.us. Archived from the original on 9 July 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  38. ^ "Archive Chart". Theofficialcharts.com. 2010-03-27. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 
  39. ^ "Best of 2010 - Billboard Top 200". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Archived from the original on 30 December 2010. Retrieved 2010-12-31. 

External links[edit]