Written by: The Bro
Future is winning so much he sounds tired of winning, but the 808s don’t stop for anyone.
It seems like every few months Future decides the time is ripe to prove he’s still at the top of trap. On his self titled album, he sounds like a man not only defending his title but perhaps also looking for new fields to conquer. As on DS2, he busts out the gate with a standout intro track. Rent Money is Future at his best, floating over the beat with ease while passing down dope lines like God on Mt. Sinai. Few match his command in the booth. At some point even the most bitter 90s rap fan has to admit the man is an MC. On Zoom he takes his adlib game to another level, perfectly fitting a beat that sounds like what might happen if Southside produced a Hunchback Of Notre Dame remake.
As usual, Future is backed by some of the best producers in rap. Southside, Metro, and Zaytoven provide multiple tracks. No Mask finds a contemplative Future dropping gems over a hypnotic flute sample from Metro. It’s a standout track on an album full of standout tracks. The fuzzy guitar licks on Outta Time bring Future Hendrix to life. The album doesn’t give you much time to breath, or come down. Poppin Tags kicks down the door after the more mellow Might As Well. Future previews many different chambers of his style, but the trademark bangers are the true constant here.
Perhaps the most interesting tracks come at the end, courtesy of Zaytoven. After countless bangers and boasts it’s as if Future lays down his weapons. With the mask truly off, both tracks find him reminiscing about his past and present. On When I Was Broke, Future takes us back to the struggle, as Zaytoven provides his trademark keys alongside some percussion that finally breaks free of the predicable hi hats that dominate the album. The flutes return on Feds Did A Sweep (shout outs to Young Guru). Once again the drums go in a different direction, this time sounding like a blunted out drumline. Here the self described monster almost sounds apologetic at times.
I get idolized by these groupies
I treat ’em just like they’re regular, yeah
They sneakin’ pics on the cellular
Preyin’ on me, I’m the predator
Preyin’ on me, I’m the predator
It’s as if he’s praying to the trap god for the groupies who surround him, for they know not what they do (or who they’re fucking with).
If there are low points to be found here, the obvious choice would be the skits which seem out of place. Rappers have used skits for decades and there still doesn’t seem to be much of a middle group. You either do it very well (De La Soul, Kendrick Lamar) or just fuck it up. Unfortunately Future falls into the latter camp, although the obvious Desiigner parody at the end of Zoom is somewhat entertaining. Perhaps the skits were an attempt to make this feel like an album, moreso than another mixtape or collection of songs. Yet it still feels like a collection of songs. That being said the ending tracks feel like an interesting glimpse into the…well, future.
Trap has been banging along for years now, with Atlanta firmly in command of hip hop. As the sub genres premier artist it seems like if anyone is going to make a leap forward sound wise it’ll be Future. Perhaps he’s just giving his audience what they want overall, while sneaking a couple hints at a future (no pun intended this time) direction.
Once again Future has defended his title and provided more than enough bangers to last throughout the spring. And with another album dropping soon, it doesn’t seem like he is stopping anytime soon.