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Album Review: “Culture II” is Migos’ attempt to follow up “Culture”

Active since 2009, Atlanta hip-hop trio Migos’ popularity grows by the year. Composed of artists Quavo, Takeoff and Offset, each individual brings a distinct personality to the group. There’s also a family dynamic within the group, as every member is directly related to one another –– Takeoff and Offset are cousins, and Quavo is Takeoff’s uncle. The group’s big breakthrough came in 2013 with the release of the track “Versace,” featuring R&B artist Drake, but since then, Migos has crafted the infamous “dab” dance move and released three studio albums.

“Culture II” is the third official studio album for the trio and the sequel to the immensely popular, Grammy-nominated album, “Culture,” which was released only a year ago.

What I liked

Track three, “Narcos,” comes with a distinct instrumental. A heavy Latin influence defines the song in which Migos describes drug dealing and mentions drug lord Pablo Escobar. Quavo emphasizes the authenticity of the group’s music, and often refers to their upbringing in the rough areas of Atlanta.

“Walk It Talk It” comes in at track six. Featuring Drake, the song is a highlight on the album. Drake follows the chorus with catchy lyricism, discussing his close relationship with the trio over the years. Migos reveals its business motives and private-jet life in an attempt to prove that it’s not all talk.

“Motorsport” is the big single from the album. With more than 113 million plays on Spotify, this song is the one that will be remembered. With features from Nicki Minaj and Cardi B, Offset’s fiancee, the diversity works well on this track.

The album is highlighted with great production by the likes of Metro Boomin, Murda Beatz and Zaytoven. Each producer brings his own signature style to the album, which is pleasant to hear.

What I didn’t like

Honestly, the album is very repetitive. Various tracks sounded similar, which made differentiating the tracks difficult. Although there were great producers, some instrumentals lacked creativity, which led to tracks bleeding into one another.

Lyrically, I was very unimpressed. Though some of the lyrics were catchy, most songs revolved around the same three topics; money, drugs and women, which gets very dull on a 24-track album.

This album was turned around quickly, for it was produced within a year’s time, and for the most part, I don’t think the group took enough time to get it right. Individuals of the group also have released other projects over the course of the year, including Quavo’s album with Travis Scott, “Huncho Jack, Jack Huncho,” and Offset’s album with 21 Savage, “Without Warning.” With so much of Migos’ music being pumped out via singles and other projects, I wonder how the trio found time to produce this album.

Lastly, Migos relied heavily on other artists for tracks to stand out, with Post Malone, Gucci Mane and Big Sean, among others, being brought in for features. I felt that Migos, behind the more impressive personalities involved, wasn’t even able to stand out on its own album.

Overall thoughts

Essentially, this highly anticipated album just didn’t live up to the hype. Although some of the production was great, the lyricism and creativity were not there. After 24 tracks –– which in itself is too long –– many songs sounded too similar to one another. However, Migos did strike gold with a few of its singles. I tip my hat to the group for producing an entire album so quickly, even if it didn’t live up to the quality of its sophomore album, “Culture.”

I give “Culture II” a 3 out of 5.

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