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“american dream:” 21 Savage’s legendary album

21+Savage+performs+his+new+songs+at+a+concert+at+Florida+International+University.
Credit: Courtesy of Flickr and Offbeat Magazine
21 Savage performs his new songs at a concert at Florida International University.

On Jan. 12, 21 Savage released his ninth solo album, “american dream.” This album features many artists across the 15 songs such as Doja Cat, Young Thug, Lil Durk, Travis Scott and many more. According to the Billboard Top 100, 14 songs off of the album charted on its list.

21 Savage started off “american dream” with an interlude from his mother. The interlude runs for about a minute. She speaks about 21’s childhood and the trials and tribulations that they both went through. She even talks about how all the choices that she has made as a mother were for him, in order to give him the “american dream.”

The swelling music from the interlude mixes with the intro to the second song on the album, “all of me,” giving the listener a seamless transition into the next song. This song is incredibly catchy. In this track, he raps about the feeling of losing a close friend and seeing many violent crimes as a child. Despite the grim lyrics, the song is very lively and entertaining to listen to. I would definitely recommend it.

The third song off the album is “redrum.” The song initially starts very slow with a sample of Elza Larangeira’s “Serenata do adeus.” When the sample fades, we are met with a fast-paced beat that will be sure to have you bobbing your head. This song is closed out with audio from “The Shining ” in which Johnny, the main character, is consumed by the spirit in their hotel. The unique blend of samples make the song very memorable, making it one of my personal favorite songs on the album.

In “letter to my brudda,” track No. 7 on  “american dream,” 21 Savage raps heartfelt verses seemingly about his friend, Young Thug, who was incarcerated recently on multiple charges. During the song, he raps about how many other rappers in the industry turned their back on Young Thug after he was imprisoned. 21 Savage clearly respects Young Thug for his career and his morals, even mentioning how he knows how hard Young Thug has worked and how kind of a person he really is.

The eighth song off the album, “dangerous” features Metro Boomin and Lil Durk. Metro Boomin and 21 Savage’s partnership has been ongoing for years. The duo even have two collaborative albums. Their chemistry is shown immediately with 21’s first verse. In my opinion, 21 Savage’s verse paired with Metro Boomin’s beat make the song a great listen, but I don’t think Lil Durk’s feature on this song was needed.

Continuing the beat from “dangerous,” the next song, “née-nah,” creates a perfect loop between the two songs. This song is kicked off with a strong Travis Scott feature, with his verses mentioning his relationship with Kylie Jenner. This feature was one of the best off of the album. 21 Savage follows suit with two verses of his own, both of which are very strong and well written. In 21 Savage’s second verse, he makes sure to shout out his friend and famous fashion designer, Virgil Abloh, who passed away on Nov. 28, 2021.

Following the last song with a heavy feature, is the solitary song, “see the real.” During this song, 21 Savage raps about his friendships and his loyalty with those friends despite their flaws. He also talks about his ability to read people and see the real person they are on the inside. This song is fast-paced but very heartfelt. He reflects on the people in his life and the wealth that he has,  making “see the real” my personal favorite song in the album.

In track No. 11, we are immediately met with a sample of “You are my Joy” by Faith Evans. Throughout the song, 21 Savage raps about his love life. This song also includes a feature from Summer Walker, who gracefully sings her verse. This song is great if you enjoy the R&B genre rather than Hip Hop.

21 Savage’s “american dream” is closed off by a slow song called “dark days.” 21 Savage reflects on his life before fame and his money. He even has advice for young teenagers, telling them to stay in school, stop the violence and leave the crime behind. Mariah The Scientist is featured on this song and she sings the chorus in a very melancholic and heartfelt tone, repeating the same line, “Even gangsters cry.” Just as the album began, with an interlude from his mother, the album ended the same way.

Overall, “american dream” was a solid album. One of the many strengths of the album was that it was stacked with features from many rappers and R&B artists. Versatility in albums are key components to make a legendary piece of music, and I personally think that is exactly what this album is.

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About the Contributor
Bowen Morrison, Staff Reporter
Bowen Morrison, Class of 2025, is a second year reporter for WSPN. He plays football and runs track in the spring. Outside of school, he enjoys spending time with friends and watching movies and shows. Contact: [email protected]
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