After a three year break, Vince Staples has returned. He has released his new album — titled, simply, Vince Staples. The album — his first since FM! — was produced entirely by Kenny Beats and is led by the single “ARE YOU WITH THAT?”
That single, which was released on Tuesday, highlights why Vince and Kenny make such a great team: the production is breezy and the song is melodic — and actually quite catchy — but that doesn’t mean Vince loses his harder edge. On the song, Vince raps:
“Everybody tough, ’till they gotta go see a judge.
Nigga better hush, remember growing up
All I wanted to be a tough, wanted to meet a plug, to get a little bread
Shoot a couple of niggas in the head”
This juxtaposition is used a lot throughout the album. He sneaks in this dark imagery within songs that feature more traditional pop elements. It is effective and it helps that the album is only 22 minutes, meaning repeated listens are rewarded.
Vince Staples talked about his new album on Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1 on Tuesday. Vince said:
“I was just having a lot of conversations with a lot of people around me, other musicians, a lot of artists, a lot of friends, and people always say, ‘Oh, you used to always say these stories and this and that, and I don’t notice much about these specific things. Why don’t you put it into the music?’ And it’ll be stuff that has been in songs for years. And then I realize it’s just not the appropriate… The backdrop wasn’t right for certain things I was saying or vice versa. So I feel like this is kind of very descript and distinct on kind of where… not just where I come from, it’s not a bunch of glory stories or things like that, I guess it’s just more personal.”
The best part about it is that Vince Staples has more on the way. According to a recent interview with Desus Nice for GQ, the rapper is planning to release two projects this year: this self-titled one and another album called Ramona Park Broke My Heart.
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