B.o.B drops a bomb

John-Magus Cambridge and John-Magus Cambridge

Hip-hop has been waiting for a messiah for awhile now; an artist who has mass appeal and who can generate buzz across many different genres. Atlanta’s B.o.B. just might be that artist.

B.O.B.’s many mixtape appearances have helped to build anticipation for his first album, and thankfully, he has lived up to his hype. His debut album, “B.o.B. Presents: The Adventures of Bobby Ray,” reached the number one spot in Billboard’s Top 100 and features appearances by hip-hop heavyweights and top rock artists.

B.o.B.’s musical style has drawn comparisons to hip-hop legends Andre 3000 and Cee-Lo Green and really makes this album unique. The album is very different from any hip-hop album listeners have ever heard. True hip-hop heads won’t really find anything for them on this album, but that’s not who B.oB. is trying to target.

The album is full of elements that aren’t usually heard on a rap album. “The Adventures of Bobby Ray” features B.o.B.’s smash radio hit “Nothing on You,” featuring Bruno Mars, a tribute to the woman in his life. The album’s second single, “Airplanes,” featuring Hayley Williams of Paramore, is a wish for the simpler life that disappeared with B.o.B.’s newfound fame. The club banger “Bet I Bust,” featuring T.I. and Playboy Tre, gives a nod to B.o.B.’s roots and really epitomizes the traditional southern sound.

“The Adventures of Bobby Ray’s” best song is “Past My Shades,” featuring Lupe Fiasco. It captures all of the unique elements of the album and creates a catchy tune that quickly gets stuck in your head and refuses to leave. This album doesn’t really sound like any individual album one has ever heard but more of a mix of Mos Def’s “The New Danger,” Outkast’s “The Love Below,” and N*E*R*D’s “Fly or Die.”

The “Adventures of Bobby Ray” succeeds in selling its watered-down rap without breaking hip-hop’s cardinal rule of sounding too much like pop. It has wide-ranging appeal without sounding scatterbrained. It successfully blends rap and rock in a way that Lil Wayne’s “Rebirth” could not.

There is a little bit of something for everyone on this album. It has a Top-40 sound that’s sure to catch on with anyone. It is by far the best rap album of the year and deserves to be added to your music library.