WARNING: This is not an official review of the album. (Morgan Freeman Voice)
The same day Donald gets COVID.
Right before Game 2 of the NBA Finals.
As all my Libras get ready to celebrate this weekend.
Even before you get a chance to really appreciate that new Bryson Tiller album...
"SAVAGE MODE 2 DROPPED AND ITS FIRE!!!!!!"
I know. I know. It's only Day 1, but it's not too early to say that 21 Savage and Metro Boomin cooked a classic with this one. Savage Mode 2 will easily be one of the most memorable releases of 2020, especially with Morgan Freeman's narration on "Snitches & Rats (Interlude)". The structure, sound, and concept of this project demonstrate why 21 & Metro blend like Kobe & Shaq. 21's wordplay, confidence, and bizarre imagery are at an all-time high: "Cock the chop hit your top, nigga, Bruce Lee/ I'm the boogeyman, pussies can't spook me" (Said N Done)... I mean it's brilliant. On the production side of things, Metro layers each track with voices and synths that are subtle constants in the background, but he also adds this slow California vibe that reminds me of Mustard. The cover art for the project was inspired by and pays homage to a couple of southern legends like the artists of Cash Money Records (Juvenile, Lil Wayne, and Birdman). Honestly, this feels like a complete project and is the perfect follow up to the prequel Savage Mode, which held hits like "X" and "No Heart".
For the most part, 21 carries his own on this project, which makes me think that the deluxe will have a solid set of features. The people that are on the album starts with the aforementioned Morgan Freeman, who classically narrates the entire project. From intro to outro, Morgan drops jewels about life: "The difference is, at least a snitch is human, but a rat is a fuckin' rat, period" ("Snitches & Rats Interlude"). Young Thug and Young Nudy are also familiar faces that made the cut for this album.
AND... OH YEA... Drake 🤣🤣🤣
On "Mr. Right Now" Drake says, "said she wanna fuck to some SZA, wait'/Cause I used to date SZA back in '08", and you can probably hear the twitter fingers from my block to yours. As we all know, Drake has a long list of celebrities he's dated in the past including Jorja Smith, J Lo, Serena Williams, and of course Rihanna, but this is sure to keep people's attention for a while. Especially with the age gap between the two being in question. On the other hand, Drake is accustomed to making tracks famous through features ("Sicko Mode", "Indeed", "Versace", "Fuckin' Problems", "Stay Schemin", etc.) so it's no surprise that a collab from him and 21 Savage would have the internet buzzing.
Back to the album, 21 pays homage to 50 Cent with the song "Many Men" saying, "Many men wanna kill me, dawg, I feel like 50". "Many Men" is definitely one of 50 Cent's most memorable street anthems, and a snippet from the original song is even played at the end of the Savage Mode 2 version. "Steppin On Niggas" has an old school NWA vibe and funny bars like "Had them killers on your step like DoorDash". The other tracks on the album are really just 21 and Metro bouncing off of each other's energy.
After the success of his last album, i am > i was, it seems like 21 is really locked in on longevity and relevance. You can tell by the rollout of this album that he's not scared to trust his fan base. Many other artists have been way more reluctant to release projects during the pandemic, but 21 definitely made the right move. Also, within the last few years, Metro has definitely claimed his spot as the top producer in Hip-Hop and is constantly evolving. This album is only going to add to his long catalog of hit records.
Personally, I really like this album. I think it will age well just like previous 21 Savage projects. Even though it's hard to tell right now, this project could come second to Eternal Atake as one of the top albums of the year. It's only Day 1 so we can't rate it yet, but it'll be on repeat until then.