Release Therapy

Music review by
Kathi Kamen Goldmark, Common Sense Media
Release Therapy Music Poster Image
Intelligence and humor, explicitly delivered.
Popular with kids

Parents say

age 18+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 17+
Based on 10 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

A mixed bag, including sexist and racist language as well as some very good, strong messages about integrity, hope, and pride.

Violence

Some violent imagery in the lyrics.

Sex

Sex references are explicit and objectify women. "I'm gonna make 'em dance so I can see them shake they ass/then I'll put 'em in a trance till I get 'em out of them pants."

Language

Just about every four-letter word you've ever heard, and maybe even some you haven't.

Consumerism

Quite a few brand names are mentioned.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A couple of references to drinking ("Patron") and drugs ("X").

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Ludacris is neither for wussies nor for dummies. (Or more nicely put, he's neither for the impressionable/sensitive nor for the unsophisticated listener.) His strongly worded messages are delivered with humor, intelligence, and a social conscience -- as well as full-tilt enthusiasm for "wild" women and the party life. Parents with strict limits about lyrics in popular music should avoid Ludacris, plain and simple. The edited versions of his songs sound ridiculous; the omitted words are plentiful and obvious, and the tracks end up sounding like nonsense. For those willing to evaluate albums on a case-by-case basis, however, there's a lot to be said for making an exception for Ludacris' newest offering, despite a liberal sprinkling of racist, sexist, and explicit language.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byBad_Movies03 April 9, 2008
Adult Written byMr. Strong April 9, 2008

Great for adults!

This album is meant for adults, and I promise to any adult: You will enjoy it!
Teen, 17 years old Written byfroger April 9, 2008
Teen, 13 years old Written bykilla April 9, 2008

What's the story?

On RELEASE THERAPY, Ludacris shows that he knows how to build a song dramatically, with attention paid to instrumental dynamics and background vocals. Even at his most explicit and inappropriate, Ludacris delivers a potent mix of intelligence and humor. It's true he writes lyrics that objectify women, but there are also messages of hope, pride, and social consciousness (\"I said it's time to stop the stealing/time to stop disrespecting our women/It's time to come home and raise our children ... to really mold our communities,\" on \"Freedom of Preach\"). The highlight of Release Therapy is \"Do Your Time,\" a shout-out to incarcerated friends and family members meant to deliver a message of inspiration, hope, and self-esteem.

Is it any good?

The difference between Ludacris and someone like, oh, let's say Chingy, is that Ludacris brings more to the table than a bunch of swear words and a lust for the party life. He's a vivid, funny, and soulful lyricist, as well as an energetic performer. Parents with strict limits on lyrics in popular music should avoid Ludacris, plain and simple. But if you're going to break down and let your kids buy an explicit album every now and then, you could do a lot worse than Ludacris, who writes with substance and artistry.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about whether Ludacris could get his point across as vividly with milder language. Aside from shock value, what does he accomplish artistically by pushing the envelope in this way? Families with relatives in prison will appreciate "Do Your Time," a shout-out to incarcerated friends and relatives.

Music details

  • Artist: Ludacris
  • Release date: September 26, 2006
  • Label: Def Jam
  • Genre: Rap
  • Parental advisory: Yes
  • Edited version available: Yes

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