Future is an artist whose name has almost come synonymous with modern Trap music. If you were to ask most casual music fans who they think of when they think of Trap music, his name is among the first that would come up. He is one of the artists who made modern Trap music popular. Future has been a part of so many of the biggest Trap songs that have come out over the last year or so. Throughout his career, it has seemed like Future has focused on quantity as far as albums go. Instead of narrowing in and focusing on making succinct and cohesive records, a lot of his projects have felt like large and sporadic compilation mixtapes. These albums have produced a huge plethora of hits, but they have typically been up and down in terms of quality. Because of this, reviewing a Future record can be difficult; I have typically opted for making articles talking about my favorite songs from his records instead. This is what I have chosen to do for you Future’s newest project, I Never Really Liked You. In this piece, I will list my favorite songs from I Never Really Liked You. Please let me know in the comments below which songs you would consider to be your favorites from this record.
KEEP IT BURNIN FEAT. KANYE WEST
‘Keep It Burnin’ is a song that was previewed online the day before the album came out, and it garnered a lot of hype for the record. This song has a super high energy and tough Trap beat. Driven by a crazy-sounding distorted synth melody and a heavy bass line, this is the kind of song that will pump anyone up when they hear it. It would be an excellent song to listen to while preparing for a sporting event. Both Kanye and Future match the energy of the instrumental on a big level. Kanye sounds like he had a lot of fun making this record; there is an exuberance to his voice and flow that reminds me of some of his music from way back in the day. Future pushes the limit with his vocals on this track. I like how he fluctuates from a lower tone to a higher tone, as it keeps the song fresh and fun. Overall, ‘Keep It Burnin’ is a high-energy banger good for any workout or pre-game playlist.
PUFFIN ON ZOOTIES
One thing that Future has always been excellent at is making his songs gain energy as they go on. A lot of times they will start sort of understated, eventually evolving to have a larger and more grand sound by the end of the track. ‘Puffin On Zooties’ is a good example of this. The song begins with Future rapping on a low-key Trap beat which is defined by its somber and downtrodden melody. This melody is mainly provided by a few guitar notes played over and over again; as simple as this riff is, it does hit my heart in a big way when I hear it for some reason. For most of the song, Future keeps a monotone vocal range and quick, monotonous flow. At the end of the track, though, his emotion picks up in a big way. He starts to sing in a high, almost strained pitch that sounds like it has so much passion. He brings the emotion and spirit of the song to a new level when he does this. ‘Puffin On Zooties’ is a great example of how large Future’s vocal range is and how diverse his rapping style can be when wants them to be.
WAIT FOR U FEAT. DRAKE AND TEMS
‘Wait For U’ is a song where Future steps out of his comfort zone. He typically doesn’t veer too far from pretty “traditional” modern Trap music(i.e. you usually won’t find him making a straight-up Pop record), but he does so on this song. ‘Wait For U’ samples Tems’ song ‘Higher,’ and it also features vocals from her throughout the song. Tems is a Nigerian Afro-Pop singer, so the melody and pacing of the song have an Afro-Pop feeling to them. There is a Pop-Trap sort of drum pattern in the background for the beat, but most of the focus of the instrumental is the beautiful melody. This instrumental brings out a softer and more exposed side to Future that we typically don’t see. Lyrically and sonically he seems vulnerable; in a song about how drug addiction and how it affects his relationships, Future sings with a soft and almost sweet tone that feels heartfelt. Drake has excelled at crossing over into the Afro-Pop world before with his music, and he sounds natural on this track as well. ‘Wait For U’ is a fun song that shows off a side of Future we usually don’t see(and a side I would love to see more of personally).
VOODOO FEAT. KODAK BLACK
Kodak Black and Future is not a combination of rappers I have heard yet on a track, but it was bound to happen eventually and bound to be good. Both of these artists are masters of flow and they both excel at sing-rapping over-complicated Melodic Trap beats, so of course, they sound great when they come together on a song. This song is driven by an intricate piano riff that honestly would be beautiful to listen to on its own. This melody brings out the best in both Kodak and Future. Both of them push their vocal ranges in this song, as they try to go toe for toe with each other and with this awesome melody. Future raps about his typical topics(drugs, guns, and girls), but Kodak goes with a bit of sophistication with his portions of the song. Kodak raps about he tries to do good things and how he wants to go to Heaven, but he ultimately keeps falling further and further down because he can’t stop dancing with the Devil. I love how Kodak opens up on this track and would love to hear more of this from him.
I’M ON ONE FEAT. DRAKE
Whenever Drake and Future come together, magic is bound to happen. Ever since their first collaboration together, they have produced nothing but hits when making music together. ‘I’m On One’ is a song that continues this trend. This track doesn’t have anything overly special about it. The song is driven by a creepy piano riff that makes up the instrumental; this is the kind of Trap melody that sounds like it came from some horror movie. I like how the instrumental comes in and out of distortion, as it gives the song extra substance. Future and Drake both ride this instrumental so smoothly. I especially have to shout out Drake. He has such an unbelievable catchy flow in his verse. Over the last couple of days, I have found myself multiple times humming this verse out loud because I can not get it out of my head. ‘I’m On One’ is yet another example of why Drake and Future are one of the most formidable duos in Trap music today.
LIKE ME FEAT. 42 DUGG AND LIL BABY
One of the best things about Future in my opinion is how easy it is for him to adapt to the sound of those around him on a track. He is one of those artists who will sound good combined with any Hip Hop artist. I feel like ‘Like Me’ is a song that demonstrates this point. While Lil Baby is an artist with a somewhat similar style to Future and who naturally meshes with Future, 42 Dugg is an artist with a very unique style that does not necessarily easily mesh with Future. They make it work on ‘Like Me,’ tho. This is a track with a tough and foreboding sound. The melody and beat are very melancholy and brash, and they give the song a high level of intensity. That intensity level is heightened by the energy brought from 42 Dugg and Future. Lil Baby almost feels like the calm and reasonable one in this trio, as Future and 42 Dugg bring the heat. This is one of the hardest and boldest tracks I have heard from Future in a while, and I would love to see him go this direction more often on his next record.