- “Alone” feat. Christina Renee
- “The Family”
Dreams have consumed my life for as long as I can remember. When I was a kid I used to daydream about what my life would be as an adult. In elementary and middle school I pictured myself in the NBA playing alongside Vince Carter, Allen Iverson, Tracy McGrady, and more. As a high schooler I thought I was going to be anchoring SportsCenter, making witty hip-hop references alongside Stuart Scott, Scott Van Pelt, and others. Once I made it to college I became infatuated with radio and thought I was going to be on-air at a hip-hop station in Atlanta after I graduated. As you can tell, none of these things happened for me. These dreams have prepared me for the one I’ve been chasing for the last couple years: working in the music industry.
A dream is nothing more than that if you’re not willing to put the work into achieving it. New York’s TruthCity has spent the last seven years trying to turn his dreams into reality and he’s on the cusp of making it happen (he was almost homeless at one point because of it). Truth’s sophomore album, While You Were Sleeping, tells his story of moving to New York from his home state of Virginia, the ups and downs of the industry, loyalty, and more. It’s a story that becomes relatable the minute you press play. There’s not one person in this world who doesn’t have a dream to be successful. Everyone has thought about their perfect career and what it would be at some point. You may even be thinking about it right now while you’re fake working at your day job so you can read this review. That’s ok because I do this at my job too. Dreams don’t have time frames and it’s easy to obsess over them, especially if your current job isn’t fulfilling to you.
While You Were Sleeping is broken into three quarters based on emotions. The first four songs are somber and reflect a time where Truth didn’t know if chasing his dream was worth leaving behind friends and family. This is headlined by the excellent intro, “Dreams”, produced by Keanu. If you’ve ever moved from home to follow a dream this song will speak to your soul. You’re being pulled in many directions while wanting to make everyone happy; ultimately you have to do what makes you happy, even if that means leaving your loved ones. “The City” recounts what it’s like to sacrifice your friends and relationships while also missing out on life moments (he mentions a friend passing in the second verse). Each record reflects an idea from the previous one which helps string the story concept along in a way that’s easy to follow. The tempo begins picking up towards the end of “Alone” as the beat switch unleashes the most honest lyrics you’ll hear from TruthCity on this album. He begins his onslaught about false promises and scammers who he mistook for friends before ending with these bars:
“To all you n****s who let me down, I’m gonna make sure you never live it down”
Our second act of While You Were Sleeping showcases a more aggressive and energetic side of Truth. The tone for this quarter is fueled by those who doubted Truth on his quest to follow his passion. “We Up” presents a great example of this; produced by Pilot Beats, Truth boasts about the hard work and dedication that he’s putting in night after night to reach his end goal. This portion of the album sees a young man who’s hard work is starting to pay off. The mafioso themed “The Family” is a great “don’t mess with my people” type of record while the King Leeboy produced “Get Rich” will make you think Truth is cutting you in on his payday when he makes it.
“Pay me in cash I don’t rap for exposure” -While You Were Sleeping
The last quarter of While You Were Sleeping comes off more emotional than the first two segments. This part of the album serves as reflection, heartbreak, and triumph through a mixture of four songs. “Commitment” gives details of Truth and his girlfriend, played by singer Kita P, being affected by him chasing his dreams. It’s difficult to give someone all of your attention when you have a drive and passion to achieve a goal like the one Truth has set for himself. This track does a good job of documenting how both parties feel about the subject. As we heard in the beginning of the album, each song plays off of an idea from the last. “Changes II” features Paul Gee and Sahlence with production from ADOTTHEGOD as Truth addresses jealousy and fear with lyrics like, “You gotta hustle I can’t do it for you/man you scared to struggle I love you but s**t gotta change”. It becomes a sad realization when you want the best for someone but they can’t change to obtain it, an idea that this song covers in an excellent manner.
Following a dream takes hard work and dedication. It’s not for those who want instant gratification, taking more than a night to pay off. TruthCity moved to New York seven years ago to chase a career in the music industry and he’s beginning to see success. While You Were Sleeping is a complete body of work that deals with the ups and downs of pursuing your passion. This album is full of motivational music for anyone who’s fed up working a 9-5 and wants to follow a dream. Take it from TruthCity: it’s not an easy task. You’ll find small wins and huge losses along the way. Never lose sight of that dream though. It’s all a process that leads to the end goal.
Flame Emoji Rating: 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥
Purchase While You Were Sleeping: iTunes