I absolutely loved his first album, Rodeo. It was artistic trap music at its finest, possibly even better than Future’s Dirty Sprite 2. So when this project was announced, I assumed that I would like this album just as much as the last. I mean why not? On that album, Travis may not have been the most lyrical rapper, but it was melodic and the beats were amazing in their own right. And I absolutely loved the fact that he had an album that featured songs with Young Thug, Juicy J, 2Chainz and the legendary Biebs and they all fitted in perfectly. Off the features list, it should have sucked, but it didn’t and I’m so glad it didn’t.
I looked at the features on this album and I saw 3 Stacks, Kid Cudi, The Weeknd and King Kendrick Lamar. Therefore, it was fair to assume that this would bang. But no. Just no. What the hell. For some unknown reason, this album sounds like a Travis Scott imitator who doesn’t quite have the sound perfected yet. And even worse, whereas Rodeo had interesting beats and utilised the auto tune effect and “Straight Up!” ad-libs perfectly, the way they’re used here drags and jars in ways that they never did previously.
“the ends” is decent, sort of a Rodeo extra and of course the guest verse by Andre 3000 is what you’d expect from an artist (he’s an artist who deserves that title) of his caliber. That’s track 1…I didn’t enjoy another song in this album until track 8. Tracks 2 through 7 blend into one boring mess of uninspiring melodies and once the melodies and banger beats are gone, the bad lyrics begin to jar. Several skips. “outside” isn’t by any means a masterpiece but kind of enjoyed 21 Savage’s verse (the “beat your baby momma throat so long, she say her jaw tired got me) and the chorus was simple but catchy. The next song “goosebumps” is by far the best song on the album. This is what I expected from a Travis Scott album. Melody on point, the beat bangs and Travis’flow is on point. And I’ve run out of superlatives to describe Kendrick Lamar verses but when he hits that falsetto, my reaction was pretty much “kfhsjahdheh”. He might really be the LeBron James of rap.
Ok, so now I’m back on board with the album and “first take” plays. In terms of sound and how much this sucks ass, I’d compare it to “Overnight” by Desiigner. Cha! Bryson Tiller sounds fresh though but despite that…Skip. Unlike a lot of people, I actually didn’t like “pick up the phone” at all and I expected to as I loved their “Maria, I’m Drunk” collaboration from Rodeo. But no, this is trash too. I have tried several times but I can’t get past 30 seconds on either “lose” or “guidance”, the latter of which sounds like he’s trying to do so pop-style, RnB/Dancehall type track. But… he can’t sing. At all. And this doesn’t have the colourful vibrancy of say a Popcaan or Vybz Kartel (Free Worl’Boss…Oh!). “Wonderful sounds like what I thought the bulk of this album would sound like. And whereas a Weeknd feature usually sounds like a Weeknd song featuring whoever the main artist is, their collaboration on Rodeo didn’t. This one does though. I could do without Travis on this.
So all in all this album is trash. Goddamn, Travis. I was rooting for you, we were all rooting for you! This is everything Rodeo wasn’t. Bland, uninspired, monotone trash.
Verdict on Travis Scott – Sophomore Syndrome strikes again. Hopefully, he can recapture that artistic flair that inspired Kanye West’s whole style since Yeezus.