Review Summary: THIS is the Gucci Mane you should despise.2 of 2 thought this review was well written
I’m sure that since as soon as the first grade, all of us have been at least vaguely aware of the expedition headed by Meriweather Lewis and William Clark. At 4 PM on May 14th, 1804, Lewis, Clark, and a crew of eleven men embarked on their westward surge to document the undiscovered wonders of the previously un-pioneered Pacific coast and surrounding territory. During the 1804-1805 winter, Lewis and Clark employed the services of a French-Canadian fur trapper by the name of Toussaint Charbonneau during their stay at Fort Mandan. Although his Shoshone wife Sacagawea is more famed and accredited than he, Toussaint played a pivotal role in the voyage as well. Two centuries later, a new type of trapper was helping pioneer another expedition. Rapper T.I. released his album Urban Legend
and the brand of hip-hop that became to be known as ‘trap rap’ was more or less officialized. Lyrically a mixture of coke slanging narratives and money throwing bravado, the subgenre has been adhered to wholeheartedly by the southern rap scene over the years, and various artists have made significant contributions to it. Trap House
is not one of those contributions. The independent debut of Atlantan rapper Gucci Mane is a disjointed effort that features lack of creativity, little to no technical proficiency, and is driven only by the quality of its beats.
Over the sprawling course of eighteen tracks, only small tidbits of lyrical creativity are on display. The clever wordplay that Gucci now exhibits comes infrequently and far between. On “Two Thangs,” he shows capabilities of the witty dope boy lyricism he’s proven to possess with a slew of clever internals,
“It ain’t the way it’s the principle/What kind of student make more money than the principle?/And I never made the honor roll/But I’m in the lunch line with a honor roll/You pumpin’ iron in the weight room/I’m on the grind got a nine in the weight room/And I never played softball/But I always kept the hard and the soft ball.
However, most of the time, he just talks about violence (e.g. “Lawnmower Man,”) drugdealing (e.g. “Pyrex Pot,”) sex (e.g. “Booty Shorts,”) and money (e.g. “Icy”) with little to no creative sprucing up.
But it’s not the entrée that saves this course, it’s the side dish. As with most southern albums, Trap House
’s production heads the charge. Dark, menacing electronics are plentiful every track. From the warping, fading, hydraulic synths of the booming title track to the tipsy buzzes and subtle Casios on “Hustle” to the sleek funky groove to “Damn Shawty,” Trap House
offers up excellent instrumentals, especially considering the production was largely funded by an independent rapper/drug dealer. Though, there are instrumental duds, such as the overly squeaky “Icy” and monotonously beeping “Go Ahead”.
The positives end there, though, as many have had problem with Gucci’s flow and delivery. With a thick, southern drawl and what sounds like a stuffy noise, La Flare stumbles around with tempo and vocal clarity. Average at best, inaccessibly pedestrian at worst, his clunky flow affects his choruses the most, as they range from sparsely ace (“Trap House,” “Lawnmower Man”) to mostly awful (“Go Ahead,” “Black Tee,” “Corner Cuttin’.”) It doesn’t help that 22% of the tracklisting is comprised of an intro, an outro, and two interludes only add to the filler, and the R&B/club songs that heavily litter the front end of the album make it inaccessible.
Luckily enough, Gucci Mane has made vast improvements from this album, and it appears that his days of clunky flow and subar lyrics are over. He may have been late to the trap rap party, but now he’s the center of attention.