Music Reviews

Review: On “The New Toronto 3,” Tory Lanez Flexes and Reflects

The Toronto polymath finally exhale

Tory Lanez knows his worth, but as braggadocious as he appears, he's somehow maintained a sense of humility and grace, all while skyrocketing into Hip-Hop's upper echelon this past year.

When he claimed to be the best rapper alive in 2019, he quickly came around and apologized. "Even if I feel that way about myself, it's a dumba** statement," he wrote on Twitter. "And even though I'm always ready to stand behind my talent, it made me look like a d*ckhead." His sense of transparency was a refreshing perspective in Hip-Hop, and even though he retracted his original statement, it was still kind of true. He has always been able to go toe-to-toe with any foe and has always felt this immense need to prove himself.

2019's Chixtape 4 was a well-executed ode to the sounds of the early aughts and had Lanez both sparring with–and paying homage to–all of his R&B idols, from T-Pain and Chris Brown to Aaliyah and Mario. It takes a special air of confidence to remix an artist's signature track in your image, let alone in front of the actual icons who created it. But Lanez has remained a special kind of beast in that respect, unafraid to go the distance and step into the ring with the best of the best. On The New Toronto 3, the polymath's final major-label release, Lanez seems to finally let himself exhale. No longer is he fighting to establish himself and showcase his abilities.

Tory Lanez - Do The Most (Official Music Video)

"They ran my name through the mud, but I'm finally respected," he raps on "Letter to the City 2." Tory Lanez uses TNT 3 to reflect and flex simultaneously throughout. He smirks at how expensive his Givenchy and Saint Laurent clothing is ("Pricey and Spicy"), he tells his ex-girlfriends to kiss his jewelry ("Who Needs Love"), and buys a new "pair of tits" for his new girlfriend who "ain't have" them ("Dope Boy's Diary"). He talks about how he hasn't been broke in a while ("Broke In a Minute"), and then vividly describes how he used to fear for his life selling drugs on the corner, all while kids laughed at him for having stains on his clothes ("P.A.I.N.").

While stylistically certain moments can run a little dry, The New Toronto 3 is impeccably balanced and is a full circle record that seamlessly ties together all of Lanez experiences . "I be goin so hard that I'm exhausted," he admits to his lover on "Penthouse Red," "I be going through these phases." As a newly independent artist, the freedom that Lanez feels is palpable; and, as he's shown in the past, what matters most is his own self-worth. "I grew to love myself and who hovers above me," he says of his foes on "MSG 4 GOD'S CHILDREN." Lanez is done fighting. It's time to ease up on the gas and take a well-deserved rest.

Check Out The New Toronto 3 below:

The New Toronto 3