September 4th, 2017 marked the 2-year anniversary of Travis Scott’s debut album Rodeo and it still bumps heavily.
This album is classic as fuck, with T.I. narrating the album throughout, paired with Travis’ new type of melodic rap and aggressive experimental instrumentation, it’s clear to see exactly why this album has stood the test of time.
When you throw this album on, you can immediately hear all his influences ranging from Kid Cudi’s moans to Atlanta’s trap instrumentation and that’s what makes young La Flame such an amazing artist.
Since Rodeo dropped, Travis has evolved into a huge star, leading the way for melodic rap and having clear influences on artists like Quavo, Young Thug, Kanye West, and Drake.
When Rodeo first dropped I hated on it based of my dislike for a previous Travis project Owl Pharaoh while Rodeo‘s breakout single “Antidote” didn’t really impress me even though it managed to be stuck in my head everyday.
When I finally decided to sit down and actually accept the music to be heard, my opinion of Rodeo was immediately switched on its head. The vibe the album gives off is consistent throughout the whole project, it remains eerie and turnt the fuck up at the same time while bringing something new to mainstream hip-hop.
Every song can stand on its own but is amazing as a cohesive project and never gives you a dull moment.
To celebrate the musical masterpiece that is Rodeo I’ve decided to describe the most impactful points during the album that make it such an iconic body of work.
When “Pornography” comes on you’re introduced to a monologue spoken by T.I. introducing Travis Scott as an unconformable rebel who chose to fuck this shit up.
A couple seconds in, deep instrumentation starts playing behind T.I’s voice setting the tone for the rest of the album. This track is still so impactful just because of how well it introduces Travis to anyone unfamiliar with him.
“Pornography surrounding me, you get high with me, you come down with me that’s all I need in my fantasy”
Travis’ first presence on the album starts around 45 seconds in as he blesses the track with eerie harmonies backed up by heavy ass 808s and a shredding guitar. This song screams rebellion as loud as it can, then that switch up comes.
That switch up easily makes this one of the goat Travis songs, giving room for him to showcase his moody melodies next to his aggressive rapping style almost making it sound like “Travis Scott ft La Flame.”
Travis’ music usually sounds like it’s alive with him during a song, where other rappers lay lyrics over a beat, Travis sounds intertwined with his instrumentation and switches up alongside the beat. “Oh My Dis Side” is the epitome of this style.
I’m a very visual person and the best way I can describe this song’s sound is a dark cave that keeps spinning around until you reach the garden deep inside that you’ve been waiting your whole life to get to.
The restless and nightmarish sound in the beginning, coupled with painful lyrics about popping pills and sleeping on a couch, transitions into a beautiful and warm harmony that sounds like it can be a Chance song.
This time paired with nostalgic lyrics and appreciation of a hard past Travis gives us growth in audio format.
This is one of those songs that’s really polarizing. No one kind of likes this song, it’s either this is your shit or this is shit.
All that being said, I see this as one of Travis Scott’s most important songs in his discography. Being Kanye’s protege, hearing them both spaz on a track like this, layered with a live band and distorted sounds is insane.
The pair’s boisterous lines like “I use your face as a urinal” and “Kamikaze over commas” give off an energy that only can be brought out by them.
This isn’t a long song nor is it complex but it’s raw emotion from the master and his student, which is amazing in itself.
La Flame’s biggest hook (pun intended) on everyone in the rap game is his ability to make something catchy as fuck using his unique melodic cadence, “Antidote” is where he’s able to showcase that talent in the most spectacular way possible.
As always, he’s paired with a moody beat that sounds like it belongs exactly where the lyrics say he is… at the night show. This song is one of the catchiest songs ever and was one of the first (besides Cudi… chill y’all) of this new age of melodic dark ass lyrics.
I know a lot of young cats don’t like to admit it but I believe this is one of the songs directly responsible for something like “XO Tour Lyfe.” We all know this song and this shit still goes crazy, anything can happen at the night show.
Ok, so this song isn’t on Spotify, I don’t know why but I had to drop the YouTube version because this song deserves every listen.
Before I address the actual song can we just appreciate the fact that Travis Scott ft. Young Thug and Justin Bieber even exists? That shit just looks good on paper and sounds even better executed. For awhile this song was the anthem me and my friends would play when it was time to get real fucked up.
Travis Scott wailing to Maria while Thug dances all over the track is an intoxicating sound. It feels like a downward spiral that you love every minute of.
This is my personal favorite Travis Scott track he’s dropped by far and it doesn’t look like it’ll be replaced anytime soon.