Maybe I’m not a fan of trap hip hop like other people, I’d like to think maybe, like the Culture II album, I should give it time…but for now, I am quite disappointed in this project. Understanding that it’s a project, rather than an actual album, it should still gravitate a lot of loyal followers towards them asking for more from this artist. I don’t think they will.
Brian Imanuel formerly known as ‘Rich Chigga’ and now known as Rich Brian, shot to fame came at 16 years old when the video to his song “Dat Stick” became a YouTube phenomimon in 2016 and even had East Coast rap legend and Wu-Tang Clan member GhostFace Killah jump on the remix. He would follow up with more music releasing Who That Be and Seventeen and in 2017 dropped 3 singles with , Glow Like Dat, Chaos and See Me leading up to his debut album “Amen” which he dropped on the 2nd of February.
After a major internal debate, it seemed best to listen through the entire project, and comment on each song as I went.
1. Amen – Gahddamn, let’s just jump into it then. Immediate beat drop, interesting intro. Like jumping onto a moving train. I really like the bounce in the beat, the rise continuously has one thinking there’ll be a hook.
2. Cold – The sound reminds me of Locnville. I understand his lyrics as being someone who’s proving his swag to whoever is willing to listen, much like the image given off his album cover, he’s not into talking to you…he’s who he is…regardless. This song was very musical…but my favourite line has to be “I don’t take drugs, I just take naps.”
3. Occupied – Feel like this song should’ve been called ‘Cold’…possible club banger (?), I has some nice bounce to it (it was genuinely short of the trap “Ay, Ay”)…otherwise it was a smooth jam.
4. Introvert (ft. Joji) – This song feels like Thundercat was in the room, that old, space-age feel to it is very Thundercat-like. The homies got flow, but his content seems to be based on stunting on his haters…most likely the old ones…and it could be just opinion but this guy sounds monotonous. Between the music and the raps…you could get caught in a trip. Joji on the hook sounds like he took the hook from one of his own projects, but it makes sense. Still sounds like Locnville.
5. Attention (ft. Offset) – Sheesh!! Turnt from the first drop! Offset was barely visible on the song, even though the beat sounded like it was a leftover from Culture 1. There was barely even a hook. Honestly, it’s great…but you can soon forget it, it’s not that hard.
6. Glow Like Dat – Back to that Locnville with hip-hop 808 kicks. Forgetful hook, but I do have a question, WHO BROKE HIS HEART?! That’s the one constant theme on this project.
7. Trespass – For a few split seconds I thought Big Sean was on this, only to find its still Brian. It still was catchy and could be a major club banger, should he make a video for it.
8. Flight – This sounds like XXXTentacion flow…that angry, I’m tryna scream load as ever high energy stuff. Very chordy though, could be a future sample.
9. See Me – Another Thundercat-like 80’s trip with trap hi-hats. Relatively sombre for this album, legit drifted into my thoughts quite far. Takes the mind off a lot.
10. Enemies – Sheesh!!! Immediate turn up! The kicks my goodness, has that screw face bass. Maybe I haven’t been aware, but it’s the first time I’m noticing him have adlibs. He flexes about being born rich with a lawyer father. Does this mean people can’t relate (possible article?)…with all of that being said, he had a different flow for this one. One of the different ones.
11. Kitty – I honestly was ready for some 808 to make me wince and do the screw face again…I also thought his flow might change…disappointed. I’ve come to understand that his content isn’t for myself, and I’d like to think I give rappers the chance… but maybe I’m not giving him a chance? His beat, as per usual is quite catchy, reminds me of Lil’ Dicky.
12. Little Prince – Was in love with this song from the first few notes!! I loved the young lady’s voice…then she disappeared. Would’ve loved to have her doing her own version of this song without Rich Brian’s verses, maybe it wouldn’t be the same? Almost angered me to find the song only lasted about 3 minutes max.
13. Chaos – Wait a second, this guy is 18? I think I need a break from this guy already, I want more from him but I feel he wouldn’t able to give it me. Outside of a slight change of flow, this song can miss me next time it plays.
14. Arizona – I genuinely cringe in happiness when his more ‘musical’ tunes come on. The sound of an old piano with the soft kick and (what sounds like) a very soft snare caught my attention without much effort. The song sounds deep enough from just the singing from August 08. Please understand that I was close to tears at how disappointed I was at this guy never changing much. Given. Dude got flow, but it not changing really makes him sound monotonous, it makes you not even want to hear his content…one of the few lines I heard was ‘Pussy so good got me doing backflips’. There’s a change in the middle of the song. The second wasn’t necessary, he could’ve faded out with the last song…would’ve been a beautiful ending. The second song though could’ve been a beautiful trip too. There’s a quick comedic skit at the end, a young conversation between himself and what sounds like a close friend. I think it ended the project properly…still the project remains more or less bland.
Look, I’m not one to shoot down the entire project. It just had so much potential yet…it didn’t reach it. I hope his next project, or what he calls his ‘actual’ debut album, could be something. Unfortunately, it’s not good enough for a second listen, but that’s just my thoughts. Think Differently? Hit us up in the comment section below.
Written By: Asanda Africander