By Lance Jordan, Sports Editor
Future is a rapper who is best known for his use of auto-tune in his music. Future received the co-sign from XXL Magazine back in 2012, which landed him on the XXL Freshmen list ahead of his debut album, “Pluto.” Since then, he has released three other full-length albums and has even received a few award nods from BET, Billboard, and iHeartRadio.
In just a matter of two weeks, the rapper released two albums, the first being his self-titled album, “Future,” and the second being “HNDRXX.” Both albums debuted at number one on the billboards.
Despite this, “Future” and “HNDRX” do not offer much variety, and midway through each project, every song begins to blur together.
In recent years, Future has worked with some of hip-hop’s greatest, such as Lil Wayne, Drake, Kanye West, The Weeknd, and most recently, Jay Z. He has even worked with pop artists on occasion—Justin Bieber and Maroon 5 being two examples. In a majority of Future’s most successful roles, he has been tapped as the hook singer or relegated to just one verse or so. Take for example his work on “Jumpman” with Drake or “Bugatti” with Ace Hood and Rick Ross.
Future is not the worst hip-hop artist out today, but to think he can carry an entire album is unrealistic.
Yet, in “Future,” he tackles a 17-track project with no features. This may work for an artist like J. Cole, but to assume that Future is on a similar level is ludicrous. “Future” is not all bad, however—“Rent Money” and the album’s single, “Draco,” are actually pretty enjoyable tracks. “Draco” refers to an AK–47, which is referenced several times throughout the song along with other popular subjects in mainstream hip-hop: women and money. “Future” lasts over 1 hour and 5 minutes in total, as Future raps over all-too-similar dark trap beats produced by the likes of Metro Boomin, Southside, and 808 Mafia.
“HNDRXX” suffers from a similar problem as “Future”: by midway through, the songs begin to blur together with no real distinction between them. It is worth mentioning, however, that “HNDRXX” feels more R&B inspired compared to “Future.” Another difference from “Future” is that Future enlisted help from The Weeknd in a song titled “Coming Out Strong” and from Rihanna in “Selfish”.
“Coming Out Strong” is a track taking aim at the haters the two have acquired over the years, which is felt when The Weeknd sings “Must be out of your mind / Do you know who I am? / Man you’re killin’ my vibe / Do you know who I am?” Despite this, the haters are still coming out strong, as The Weeknd sings in the chorus. “Selfish” finds Future and Rihanna singing about supposedly coming back together for one night in order to fulfill each other’s selfish desires. But of course, Future can not help himself and throws in a couple lines about his drug abuse and wealth before the song is finished.
At this stage in his career, Future has his die-hard fans who enjoy the music that he puts out each year. For a more casual fan like me, however, it is easy to get Future fatigue in both of his new albums, despite a difference in tone. Even features from The Weeknd and Rihanna on “HNDRXX” are not enough to compel me to listen through the entire album. I will give Future credit, however. To put out two consecutive, 17-track albums is a commendable feat, and I would love to see other artist accomplish this. With rumors of a third album releasing soon, there may be more of Future to come—whether we want it or not.