Fresh off of the season finale of his reality TV series T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle, T.I. returns to music after a two-year hiatus with Paperwork, continuing his streak of currency themed album titles. The project was released Oct. 21, 2014 via Columbia Records (in collaboration with his own Grand Hustle Records), and is his first effort under the label since ending ties with Atlantic Records.
Paperwork boasts an impressive range of supporting artists, including Iggy Azalea (featured on his second single, “No Mediocre”), Pharrell (on title track for the album), Chris Brown (“Private Show”) and Usher (“At Ya’ Own Risk”). The album also includes newcomers Victoria Monet and WatchTheDuck.
DJ Mustard, Tommy Brown and The Beat Bully are among the array of producers on the album, lending their mixture of live elements and 808s to accompany the cinematic fast-life feel and oriented lyrics. “Let Your Heart Go (Break My Soul),” featuring The-Dream is a standout track, which sees T.I. reminiscing of an old camaraderie that he lost. The title track for the album, featuring Pharrell is a replicated “Blurred Lines” esque song, boasting about the glamorous life that money brings.
Boasting two Billboard Hot 100 hits, Paperwork is on its way to claiming a spot as a redemption album for T.I. With promotion and push from a new contract with a different label, T.I. is in a position filled with potential to re-solidify his plank as a current hip-hop pioneer.