The Zeitgeist of Hip-Hop: Migos’ Culture
Album Reviews
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The Zeitgeist of Hip-Hop: Migos’ Culture

Donald Glover, a.k.a. Childish Gambino, set social media ablaze with all things Migos on January 8th when he shouted out the Atlanta hip-hop trio and their single “Bad and Boujee” during his first Golden Globes acceptance speech. The big ups to Migos increased Spotify streams of the single by a staggering 243 percent and it didn’t stop there—Glover confirmed an upcoming collaboration with the group and proclaimed Migos “the Beatles of this generation.” Currently, “Bad and Boujee” is the number one song on the Billboard 100.

Migos, no strangers to the charts, have ruled the past few years with singles such as “Versace” with a feature by Drake, “Look at my Dab,” and “Fight Night,” but would the string of successes continue for the trap trio upon the release of their latest musical effort?

With much hype and anticipation, Migos released their sophomore full-length album, Culture, on January 27th with features from heavy-hitters like Gucci Mane, Travis Scott, Lil Uzi Vert and 2 Chainz. Upon listening to the album through, I could not help but notice the vocal seamlessness of Qauvo, Offset, and Takeoff—a melodic and literal representation of their growth since their 2013 mixtape, Y.R.N. (Young Rich N****s). Migos’ growth spurt did not leave their signature catchy hooks and undeniable chemistry in the dust, but played on these strengths and set the bar for the future of hip-hop.

Most of the 13 songs on the album feature a heavy bass line without sounding indistinguishable from one another as unique songs. Being said, Migos has gone from mastering the art of the single to mastering the art of the album.

The Migos, without hesitation, have launched beyond notoriety into superstar status.

 

If you’re bad and boujee, you will (probably) like these tracks from Culture:

  • “Get Right Witcha”
  • “Slippery (feat. Gucci Mane)”
  • “Deadz (feat. 2 Chainz)”
  • “Out Yo Way”
The Rap Up: Episode No. 14
The RapUp/The RapUp
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The Rap Up: Episode No. 14

More Life

Drake has been teasing fans for several months now about his upcoming project More Life. Recently during a tour stop in Amsterdam, Drake told fans who were in attendance that they should indeed attend his next show on February 26th, which will be entirely different as More Life will be out by then. While there isn’t a set release date for the project, we can assume it will arrive sometime between now and February 26th. The project will also be released as an Apple Music playlist, which is an odd move but could give insight into what the project may entail. There have been rumors that the project is supposed to be a compliation album which leads us to believe the project/playlist may feature other artists than just Drake. Perhaps a few OVO tracks, a few from Skepta, 21 Savage and of course some new material from Drake. Whatever the case may be, we’re ready.

Migos Szn
Atlantas trio has had a heck of a month. With only 31 days into the new year, rap group The Migos have been the centre of attention. With their new album Culture just dropping the group is blowing up. Quavo, Offset and Takeoff just released their album which features Gucci Mane, Travis Scott DJ Khaled and 2 Chainz. The group first got the biggest co sign of their careers when Donald Glover got on stage to accept his award for the show “Atlanta” and shouted Migos out by saying their hit song that went platinum “Bad and Boujee” is the song of the year. After that their numbers just sky rocketed. There is a petition being passed around saying that Migos should replace Lady Gaga to perform at the half time show at the Super Bowl this upcoming Sunday. The trio then did a mini interview where they said since the best team in the NFL, the Atlanta Falcons are in the Super Bowl the Best trio in Atlanta deserve to perform. I don’t know about you guys, but I defiantly would sign that petition.

(Written by TJ Mroz & Yafet Berhane)

 

Songs Played This Week:

Bad & Boujie – Migos

Get Right Witcha – Migos

Tempted – Jazz Cartier

Run Up – Major Lazer Ft. PND & Nicki Minaj

Change – J. Cole

High For Hours – J. Cole

Return of the Cool – Nick Grant Ft. B.Hess

Bouncin – Nick Grant

The Great Gambino
Album Reviews
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The Great Gambino

Where does one begin when it comes to discussions of Donald Glover? He is an incredibly talented screenwriter, comedian, actor, and musical artist, amongst his dealings in other noteworthy areas. The majority of people would identify him as the actor that played Troy on Community, but he also co-wrote a number of seasons of the television show 30 Rock with Tina Fey. In 2018, he will star as Landon in the next Star Wars film. There is nothing that he can’t do.

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The Music

The first mixtapes: I Am Just A Rapper, Cul de Sac, EP

Although they are all very different, these three mixtapes are what put Donald Glover on the map as Childish Gambino. These mixtapes features not one, but two Adele samples, and as well as a full re-work of All of the Lights by Kanye West and Real Estate by Wiz Khalifa. Collectively, these tapes provide listeners with Gambino’s origin story, and how his career as a writer prepared him for a career as a rapper. He affirms the message that being an intellectual should not take away from his ability to succeed in hip-hop. Obviously, he was right.

Studio album #2: Camp

This is the album that brought us the hit single Heartbeat and Bonfire. This is inarguably the most beloved work of Childish Gambino fans, not only as his first studio release, but as something that they could easily listen cover-to-cover. It offers a little bit of everything, including all of the wit expected from a comedian, writer, and actor. Additionally, it encompasses a larger discussion about life, love, and pursuing the Arts.

Mixtape #4: Royalty

One word: bangers. If you’re looking for an unreal mixtape to play at the gym, this is the one for you. It features artists such as Wu-Tang Clan’s Ghostface Killah and Danny Brown, but he also goes in on a track with his younger brother, Steve G. Lover. See what he did there? I do.

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Photo Credit: Khadijah Plummer (the deep web tour: toronto; March 30, 2014)

Studio album #2 (and screenplay): Because the Internet

This second album was released in November 2014, and featured his first international tour called the deep web tour. I had the privilege of seeing his first of the two Toronto shows in March of 2015. Gambino experienced mainstream success with singles such as Pink Toes featuring Jhene Aiko as well as the ever-so-catchy 3005. Because the Internet is very complex album and arguably his least accessible. I only say this because the understanding of the overall message is partially embedded in the 70+ page accompanying screenplay (which is very hard to find these days). Luckily, I read it back in 2014. The “rich kid a**hole” that Gambino personifies both in the album and on stage is used to illustrate the collective struggle and problem of the Millennial generation. Due to the creation and perpetual evolution of the Internet, information is easily accessible, but our communication is suffering. Mistakes are forever, and feelings are fake. It is so easy to create a persona through the various social media platforms; we can be whomever we choose to be online. The consequence? Losing your true self in the process.

#ROSCOESWETSUIT

Mixtape #5: STN MTN/KAUAI

This fun-loving mixtape came out of nowhere in 2015, to bridge the gap of silence that followed after Because the Internet and its accompany deep web tour. Childish released the mixtape for free, because he wanted it to be accessible for everyone; no purchase necessary. STN MTN/KAUAI is a two-part mixtape consisting of 18 tracks. There are a great deal of ad-lib tracks, and noteworthy features and re-works. The track that had the most impact on my listening experience is Gambino’s cover of U Don’t Have to Call by Usher. This cover was further re-worked by Mura Masa and Elhae. It features soulful vocals in the beginning, and then segues into a spoken word by Gambino (and no, I don’t mean rap).

What’s next: Awaken, My Love! 

So far this month, two singles from his upcoming studio album Awaken, My Love! have been released. The album artwork (see feature image) is very eye-catching The tracks are both very soulful, showcasing more of Gambino’s vocal talent that initially emerged through Because the Internet. The tracks are very experimental, which in itself is a Gambino trademark. I find Me and Your Mama to be Pink Floyd-esque in nature, playing out similarly to the track Wish You Were Here on the purely formal level. The second single, Redbone, has a vibe that is reminiscent of Lauryn Hill, primarily in terms of the vocals. The album is set to release on December 2nd of this year. I look forward to listening to and reviewing this album, as it is shaping up to be another breath of fresh air.