Nelly - 5.0

HipHopDX Editor's Rating:

  • 1
  • 1.5
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Average User Rating:

2.91

23 people have voted.

1 is the most popular ranking.

8 people gave it a perfect five.

Cast your vote »

Nelly's rhyme game has not improved as his lyrics remain dull. It's hard to expect much from a rapper who made one of his biggest hits around a nursery rhyme.

It would be difficult for Nelly to duplicate the success he once enjoyed. When Jay-Z said, “Only dudes moving units: Em [Eminem], Pimp Juice [Nelly] and us,” there was speculation over how long the St. Louis, Missouri star’s party would last. While Eminem and Jay-Z have solidified their statuses, renegading the game’s charts for years with few missteps, Nelly has somewhat vanished from the mainstream conversation. Aside from rumored romances and early hits being played at sporting events, it has been tough to find Nelly as a relevant figure in the culture, even with mild success on Brass Knuckles. This makes 5.0 all the more vital, an album designed to be his comeback disc, one that reintroduces us to Pimp Juice. That may have been the intention, but, instead it really affirms that his seat at the table of Rap was taken during his hiatus.


No one was expecting a lyrical extravaganza, but how can one avoid the glaring pitfalls of Nelly’s pen? On “I’m Number 1”   he horribly exclaims, “If my money’s stupid, my credit card’s a retard.” Lines don’t get any better when he later notes that someone needs to call a doctor. “My diagnosis? I got ‘Gettin’ Money’ syndrome.” While his flow remains catchy in the sing-song tone, he ventures into the graveyard to dig out Auto-Tune-assisted cuts. “Nothing Without Her” and “Gone” feature Nelly doing his best T-Pain, only to put out his worst Nelly. Mr. Country Grammar bounces back with “Just a Dream,” a track that brings him back to his romantic tactics, a favorable move for female fans not interested in good lyrics.  

The beats only further sink this ship. Polow Da Don recycles a few tracks to make “Long Gone.” The Runners, who produced the Keri Hilson-assisted “Liv Tonight,” only place Nelly completely out of his element. Also, Don Vito and Blade put a Notorious B.I.G. sample on a track that doesn’t deserve the late great’s vocals (“1000 Stacks” featuring Diddy). Still, Nelly supporters will appreciate Jim Jonsin’s production, specifically on “Just a Dream,” a track that allows Nelly to get back to where he feels most comfortable.  

With a chart-topping radio hit in “Just A Dream,” time will tell if Pimp Juice goes back to being a Midwest pillar in the Rap map. As for quality, Nelly’s rhyme game has not improved as his lyrical swords remain dull. It’s hard to expect much from a rapper who made one of his biggest hits around a nursery rhyme. Flow wise, he’s cheapened his game with the Auto-Tune help and his instrumental choices remain club driven, radio-friendly cuts. Much like Brass Knuckles before it, 5.0 might just be another forgettable release from the St. Lunatic.

39 Comments

  • MusicFan

    I use to fuck wit Nelly hard when he dropped Country Grammar and Nellyville. After SweatSuit, he died. So this album shows him trying but still....no...2.5/5

  • Samuel Bowden

    5.0 was $#@!ing amazingggg

  • Chupps

    thank you, lets start acknowledging trash as it is...

  • badmusic

    LMAO DAMN NELLY FELL OFF HARD , remember when he was on every radio station and tv show . now he is just plain wack and corny . terrible album weak rhymes pop rap songs .

  • tonecapzzi

    twitter/tonecapzzi (Bedroom Beast)new music peep it

  • Theresa

    Nelly is teaming up with dosomething.org to tackle hunger! He is making dreams come true for hungry families and you can too! Check out his announcement here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rI5l3xL58LA

  • Jayyboy

    Terrible. Nelly is better than this

  • c red

    man nelly fell off so bad i thought this album would be fire because it took so long to make dont waste your money on this go get that yelawolf now that album is off the chain the best of the year imo

  • toolisto

    hey andres vasquez, suck a dick. you already wish you could take back your biased ass review. GTFOH, you dumb. Is Nelly commercial? Yes. Does he make street, gutter music? No. Is his music good, and danceable? Yes. then thats all we need.

  • CarJay

    um.... I dont know about this album because after brass knuckles and nellyville i got hopes to high.. This anit exactly wat i had in mind but some of his modernized songs are O.K but still ...it aint him anymore

  • Anonymous

    i agree peopel are being way to harsh with this album. truth is their is room for Nelly in hip-hop like it or not. i'm not tryna bump kweli and lupe all the time, someitme i just want something fun with a catchy hook. i'm glad he's back cause him and ja rule do that best

  • Killalex

    Good review DX, Nelly is garbage. Where did all these stans come from?

  • ts5000@yahoo.com

    this album is super wack u would expect a decent album from nelly the only song i like on it is just a dream

  • phuckyou

    cmon now..i didnt' know nelly had so many stans. yo this album is straight trash. the only good song is "im number one" and he spits one short ass verse???? the rest of the album is lame soft ass pop music for the females....which is okay if u make it dope but the songs are mad boring. this nigga's like ten years too late.

    • Step

      "I'm Number One" is arguably the worst song lyrically on the album, both for Nelly and of course Baby. Obviously you have no idea what you're talking about.

  • Anonymous

    HipHopdx stop these riduculous reviews! Albumn is not great but one star? Go give kanye 10 stars and acting if kanye is a god on the mic????

  • WTF-MAN

    Shits on Pink Friday

  • Step

    Its very obvious that this writer was bias toward hating Nelly. Thats sad that he got assigned or chose to review this album, cause he completely hates this incredible artist. All the reviews on here talk about multiple cuts off the album, discuss features, etc ,etc, etc. This writer does nothing. This album is a very pleasant surprise. As a massive Nelly fan I will admit Brass Knuckles just didnt bring it. But 5.0 is Nelly at his finest. Nelly has always been more hi pop than hip hop, everyone knows that. now all of a sudden he should be punished for that? Did this writer not expect him to sing on this album? Lets not forget Nelly introduced singing to this genre. Youre welcome Drake, Kanye, Wayne, and all the artists who embarrass themselves singing on their records. Anybody waning on whether to buy this album or not, please do not base your decision on this garbage writing people call a review. Nelly is very versatile on this album. Its interesting to admit that this album is very similar to what i imagined it to be, yet Nelly surprises me time and time again with how he attacks each track. Please go get the album, and make it the deluxe edition, because "Go" is the best song out of the 15. Keep doin you Nelly, people forget that youve sold more records than anyone else debuting in the new millennium. Much better than Brass Knuckles!!

    • Samuel Bowden

      i do agree with the review saying that brass knuckles was shit because to say it was good would insult nelly's ability to make music. But this album was amazing, with an expection of maybe two songs i can listen to it for days, this rewiewer only pointed out the shit lyrics, every album has shit lyrics, but there is also good lyrics on this album too, way to many people hated this album before they gave it a chance, Nelly is a legend :)

    • Jugo

      Agreed!! This is the most biased review i have read in a long time. Nelly did his thing with this album. Its not perfect by any means but for a Nelly album it is good. Sorry haters.

  • MIKE FROM DETROIT

    naw this album good

  • Angel De Peña

    hahaha lmaooo

  • Semval

    I like his music, Just a dream hot song but fully album is not so good

  • Big CeeJ

    I think ya'll being a little harsh with this album. Yeah its not an amazing album, buts its easy listening and people will like the more r'n'b based tracks, that has made Nelly successful. Nelly has always maintained his own style and this is another example of that. It's not as bad as ya'll making out!

    • HOODkakashi

      I agree with you here. This has always been Nelly's style and yall act like he's supposed to go against that?? Whatever. I've always been a Nelly fan so i will support this.

  • tumblerweeds

    never liked nelly, not ever.

  • Anonymous

    Anyone checking for this album needs to run up the nearest skyscraper and jump. You"ll do us all a favor

  • ASEE

    Is it just me or has HHDX stepped up its review-game these last several weeks? They're giving ill albums the props they deserve and calling shitty albums pieces of shit. Keep it up! Rep that real hip hop!