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New album from Travis Scott

ASTROWORLD

Autor(en): Evan Cooley am Freitag, 3. August 2018
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Quelle: @shutterstock

Travis Scott in concert

Travis Scott and his third album: Houston’s hip-hop poster child returns with his unique dark and chaotic energy. And a new style. IT’S LIT!

 

After two long years, hip-hop heads all over the world rejoice as Travis Scott returns with his third studio album, ASTROWORLD. Named after an amusement park in his hometown of Houston, TX that was torn down thirteen years ago, Travis Scott aims to recreate the feeling of losing a place so prominent to his childhood. “That’s what (ASTROWORLD) is going to sound like, like taking an amusement park away from kids. We want it back. That’s why I’m doing it.” He teased the album by putting inflatable Travis Scott heads in locations like Time Square in New York City, Houston, and Los Angeles. The head would also appear on the album cover, symbolizing the message he puts forth in this album. Just like the cover, ASTROWORLD’s sound makes you feel like you’re inside of a disorderly amusement park with fires raging and children running around you. No other artist in hip-hop brings the chaotic energy that Travis brings through his music and especially his live shows. I saw him last July alongside 80.000 others, and the crowd made you feel like you were in a warzone. People jumping, screaming, shoving, and rapping along to every lyric they heard.

Various artist are working with Travis Scott

The list of artists that accompany Travis on this project ranges across genres and generations. STOP TRYING TO BE GOD features Kid Cudi along with indie singer-songwriter James Blake and the legendary Stevie Wonder. My favorite track on the album, SKELETONS ft. The Weeknd, brings a whole new sound to the project with production from Tame Impala and Pharrell Williams. Travis also utilizes the hottest modern hip-hop artists across the project with names like Drake, Frank Ocean, and 21 Savage. The features on this album almost seem like a list Travis made of all the artists he would hypothetically strive to work with one day, but then he actually went out and got every single one of them. More impressive than the list itself, is how Travis made use of each of these artists. Each feature on the project belonged there. At no point did I think that an artist feature was on the track to solely to add another big name to the ASTROWORLD list. All Kid Cudi does on the track STOP TRYING TO BE GOD is hum in the background; but if you’re going to get an artist to hum in the background of your song, Kid Cudi is your first and only choice. Cudi has been melodically humming over tracks for years now, and Travis knew it would build on the overall sound of the track. On ASTROTHUNDER, jazz-fusion artist Thundercat is an unlisted co-producer although all he does on the track is play bass. But his bass style is so indistinguishable that it really does adds another piece to the ASTROWORLD puzzle.

New album, new style?

ASTROWORLD hovers around an hour length, similar to his previous two albums Rodeo and Birds In The Trap Sing McKnight. Although the sound on this project is more refined, the distorted, bassy production that Travis thrives with isn’t lost on ASTROWORLD. One surprising quality of the album is the number of beat-changes on tracks like SICKO MODE and NO BYSTANDERS. These changes almost make the listener feel uneasy, but that's the unpredictable energy you expect from Travis Scott. Travis also reminds us with ASTROWORLD that no one has the ad-lib energy that Travis does. “IT’S LIT!” and “STRAIGHT UP” echo throughout the whole project ensuring that the energy doesn’t die down, not even between bars.

Cult followers of Travis (which aren’t too hard to find) are already all over social media comparing ASTROWORLD to his previous albums and renowned mixtape Days Before Rodeo. Comparing them on an artistic level is fair, but putting them on a pedestal to try to find the artists’ “best” seems rather arbitrary. Without their previous work, they wouldn’t have anything to build their sound off of. ASTROWORLD ventures out to different sounds that Travis hasn’t used before, while also capitalizing off of the explosiveness that you may hear in Rodeo or Birds In The Trap Sing McKnight. If you’re a fan of Travis’ bangers, then this album may fall a little short for you. But if you’re like me, ASTROWORLD impresses due to bringing out fresh and unheard vibes in Travis’ music that we haven’t heard before. I’m curious to see how the general populous reacts to the album, since by the time I’m done writing this review the album will have only been out for 7 hours. But all things considered, ASTROWORLD proves that quality music takes time and the wait for projects similar to these are worth it.

Platte des Monats

Auf den Ehrenplätzen der Rubrik „Wörter, die es nur im Deutschen gibt“ sitzt seit jeher die feucht-fröhliche „Schnapsidee“. Sie beschreibt treffend wie kein anderes Wort das, was entsteht, wenn drei befreundete Musiker*innen auf einer Geburtstagsparty einen über den Durst trinken und dann beschließen eine Band zu gründen. Aus einer solchen Schnapsidee wurde auch das Bandprojekt Phantastic Ferniture um Sängerin Julia Jacklin, das auf seinem gleichnamigen Debüt den Emotionsreichtum der Adoleszenz in leichtfüßig schwankender und wunderbar wärmender Gitarrenmusik feiert.

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