Migos – Yung Rich Nation
The last year and a half has been an eventful one for Atlanta-based hip hop trio Migos. After releasing a series of solid mixtapes last year, including No Label 2, there was understandable hype for the group headed into 2015, with the rumored release of their debut studio album. However, progress was halted after all three members of the group – Takeoff, Quavo, and Offset – were arrested at an April concert on the Georgia Southern University campus for marijuana possession and firearm possesion. While Takeoff and Quavo were released on bond days later, Offset was given an additional battery charge and is currently incarcerated.
Because of this, there was a slight delay to Migos’ debut album, Yung Rich Nation, but it was finally released last Friday, July 31, on 300 Entertainment and Atlantic Records. While the album was another enjoyable piece of work, it doesn’t feel like much of an improvement over any of the group’s previous mixtapes. The album continues the trend of some hilarious lines, especially on the track “Highway 85”, which details a police chase across major US highway Interstate 85, which has several junctions in Atlanta. Offset especially sparks some laughter with lines such as “Mama on my line sayin’ I’m on Fox 5 / I said ‘you sure Ma?’ she said ‘baby it’s live'”
Other than some of his fun lines, however, Offset is noticeably behind his other group members in quality. Quavo does an excellent job on the majority of the hooks (with some help from Chris Brown on “Just For Tonight”), and Takeoff steals the show with most of the verses that performs. The album has some solid production, handled mainly by Zaytoven, Murda Beatz, and Honorbale C.N.O.T.E., but nothing sticks out as very memorable. There are some interesting instrumentals such as the piano on the intro track “Memoirs” or the mesh of instruments and beats that make the closing song “Recognition” both upbeat and mellow at the same time.
Migos could use some more variety to their lyrics, with many of the songs detailing their sudden rise to fame, their upbringing, style, and fame, but the title track and closing track both combine the nice aforementioned instrumentals to tracks that both recognize their previous life, before the money and the fame. As a trio, they don’t need, and didn’t use, a lot of features (only Young Thug appears as a guest besides Brown), but maybe a few more guest verses in the future could help change up the one of some of the tracks. If they can get some more variety in their songwriting, this group has a chance to go much bigger than they already have – the talent is all there.
FAVORITE TRACKS: Memoirs, Migos Origin, Highway 85, Recognition
LEAST FAVORITE TRACK: Dab Daddy