by Daniel O’Neill ’21 A&E Staff
21 Savage, in collaboration with the producer Metro Boomin, has officially released his latest album, Savage Mode II. Earlier in the week of Sept. 28, the duo announced the arrival of their album, which officially released on Oct. 2. There are many featured artists on the album, including Young Thug, Drake, and Young Nudy. This is the first album that 21 Savage has released since the Grammy-nominated I Am > I Was released on Dec. 21, 2018.
This album was the first creation by 21 Savage and Metro Boomin as a pair since Savage Mode in 2016 and Without Warning in 2017. The duo also worked together on a highly collaborative project, Not All Heroes Wear Capes. The first track on their new album is a recording of Morgan Freeman speaking. The song then quickly ends and transitions into “Runnin’” which is quickly becoming a stand-out track for fans on the album. The combination of the two artists is proving to have the potential of legendary success. This is the fourth successful collaboration between the hip-hop duo, debuting at No. 1 on the Billboard 200.
In recent years, Metro Boomin has positioned himself to stand out in the music industry, specifically within the rap scene. He is known as one of the top producers for rap music coming out of Atlanta. He came onto the scene at the beginning of the 2010s, quickly making his mark on and impacting the industry as he collaborated with other hip-hop artists from the Atlanta area. Typically, Boomin is praised for his dedication to the specific beat types throughout entire projects. On 21 Savage’s breakout mixtape, Savage Mode, Metro Boomin stuck to similar beat types to keep the mixtape consistent. His beats are known to be haunting and sometimes dark, as the artists who collaborate on his beats frequently delve into deep, ominous, and sometimes traumatic topics. On this most recent album, however, he created beats that dip slightly into other genres. The opening tracks feature the normal intense beats that Metro Boomin is known for. Later on in the album, songs like “Said N Done” reflect sounds and melodies found in R&B tracks.
Critics have come out and noted that the tracks on the album all sound similar. This is because many of the songs are extremely bass heavy. Recently, 21 Savage has decided to create more cohesive albums. This is bound to make the majority of the songs sound similar, whether musically or purely thematically. While the first half of Savage Mode II sounded relatively similar to the duo’s past works together, the second half of the album ends up bringing diversity to the entire sound of the album. By making the decision to create coherent albums, an artist has no choice but to grow in order to make new and interesting music. 21 Savage and Metro Boomin succeeded in this task, as the album shows growth and maturity for the two superstars. Currently, the album is trending upward, with music videos for “Runnin” and “My Dawg” propelling the album forward into the limelight.