By Nadir Roberts
Arts & Entertainment Editor
Houston native Travis Scott released his third studio album, “Astroworld," on Aug. 3. The album has potential to rank up against other projects in 2018, but compared to La Flame’s other work, “Astroworld” falls a little short.
The album’s name is inspired by the Six Flags amusement park in Houston that shut down in 2005. Sprinkled with ill-advised beat changes, the album has many sections and parts –– almost like a real amusement park.
The first song from the album, “STARGAZING,” is a two-part introduction to what Astroworld is made up of –– drugs, Houston references, Kylie Jenner and how Travis is ahead of the rap game.
“‘99, took AstroWorld, it had to relocate / told the dogs I’d bring it back, it was a seal of faith,” Scott rapped in his second part of “STARGAZING.”
One of the selling points of the album, and one of the reasons why the album wasn’t a full disappointment, were the features. Leaving it up to fans to figure out who was on what song, Scott didn’t reveal the features on his tracklists. Just so you have a little taste, features included the likes of Frank Ocean who provided some auto tuned high notes for “CAROUSEL” and 21 Savage who slaughters “NC-17.”
Another one of the hidden gems of the album would have to be “COFFEE BEAN.” This song ends the album in a way that makes the listener value the time and effort Scott has put into his music and being an artist. In the song he repeats “this is all, this is all” in the background. He lets fans know that he put his blood, sweat and tears into this project.
Considering that this is the same La Flame who made bangers such as “3500,” “Mamacita,” “Upper Echelon” and many more, the hype songs on this album don’t quite cut it. The many fans raving over “SICKO MODE” are bound to kill it quickly.
Another follow up that isn’t as hyped but that has a superb flow is “YOSEMITE.” Assisted by Gunna and Nav, while also having a well organized guitar riff in the background, “YOSEMITE” is a solid song. Yosemite, which means literally “those who kill,” is a fitting title as the three talk about how they’re killing the game right now. Filled with catchy lyrics about expensive taste and travels, it is a top song from the album.
“Astroworld” is a good example of artistic expression. Through Astroworld, Scott was more open and lyrical than usual. Scott, who’s known for being an auto-tune-heavy artist, really allows himself to get deep with this project. Of course after the birth of his first child Stormi, and rumors swirling around if he is really her father (he confirmed in January that he is the father), he had no choice but to answer fans’ questions.
In the song, Scott touches on the fragile subject of his relationship with Jenner and gets very personal. He raps, “your family told you I’m a bad move / plus, I’m already a black dude.”
The Kardashian family has been very concerned with public image for quite some time. The family was worried that Scott’s lifestyle would interfere with the family’s goals or reputation.
Overall Astroworld is an interesting project / experiment. I’m not a wholehearted fan yet, but I also don’t think Scott totally struck out. The rapper’s career is still somewhat young, so let’s see what he cooks up next.