by Owen Steffan ‘18
After a dominant 2017 which included two Grammy nominations and several chart topping singles, Atlanta rap trio Migos returns with their new album “Culture II.” The project is a follow-up to the critically acclaimed 2017 album “Culture” which featured songs such as “T-Shirt” and number one hit, “Bad and Boujee.” With “Culture,” Migos established themselves as one of the most prominent hip hop groups in modern music.
Quavo, Offset, and Takeoff’s third studio album clocksin at one hour and forty-five minutes with a whopping 24 tracks to its name. Lead singles “Stir Fry” and “Motor Sport” are high-energy trap bangers that left fans everywhere with high hopes. Unfortunately, the rest of “Culture II” does not live up to those expectations.
The album kicks off on somewhat of a high note with “Higher We Go,” a familiar-sounding cut with an infectious hook and solid verses from each member of the trio. However, the issues that arise within this intro track are recurring throughout the project: The song sounds almost too familiar and doesn’t bring anything new to the table. It seems to run on for a minute too long and gets very stale after a couple of listens. Songs such as “Supastars,” and “Beast” personify what is wrong with “Culture II.” Neither of these tracks are particularly bad, but they are easily forgettable and don’t show any growth from the trio. Given the length of the album, a few average tracks are expected every now and then, but when almost half of the songs follow the same cut-and-dry formula, it becomes hard to listen to without losing interest. Cuts such as “Too Much Jewelry” and “Movin’Too Fast” are solid songs that lose their appeal because they blend in with some of the similar sounding tracks on the album.
On “Culture II,” Migos also experience some of their lowest points as a group in years. “White Sand,” featuring Ty Dolla $ign, Big Sean, and Travis Scott, is easily the most disappointing cut on the project, considering the big names attached to it. “Gang Gang” is one of the worst songs that the trio has ever released, while “Open It Up” is a failed attempt to duplicate the success of “Deadz,” a song on “Culture” with an eerily similar-sounding hook.
The project is not without its positives, however, as in addition to the two strong singles, cuts such as “Walk It Talk It” and “CC” serve as a great reminder as to what the Atlanta-based trio is capable of. The former features an addictive, playful hook with a strong verse from Drake, while the latter sees the Migos reunite with Atlanta rap counterpart Gucci Mane.
“Culture II” is too long and too predictable for its own good. For a group like Migos who bring little to the table in terms of lyrical substance, it’s important not to become too repetitive or predictable, but that’s exactly what they did. “Culture II” is just a money-grab and comes nowhere near its predecessor “Culture.”