It has been two weeks since Future released his self entitled LP Future and a week since HNDRXX, both being completely unexpected with only minimum announcement on Future’s part. Future has been riding a steady and rising wave of success over the past few years, starting in Atlanta gaining recognition through mix tapes and later making more music for radio play. He received significant fame with DS2 (i.e. Dirty Sprite 2, a follow up to his Dirty Sprite mix tape from 2011), which later continued with his collaboration album with Drake, What a Time to Be Alive, his album Evol, mix tape Purple Reign and the Purple Reign tour with Ty Dolla Sign.
But before all of his mainstream fame, Future was something else, a darker type of hood and trap infused mix tape style of music. He made his name with this drugged out sounding voice and trippy beats, with lyrics detailing the hustle of his lifestyle. Then, Honest was created in 2014, the pop/radio version of Future that some thought was his descent in the hip hop world. Yet he only came back harder and stronger with works like, Monster, DS2, and EVOL, just to name a few. Future is using Future and HNDRXX to create a juxtaposition with one another, to display the progression of his career and the cross over between thug style rap and lovey pop.
Future took me back to when I was in my freshman and sophomore years of high school, it was the type of aggressive trap that he hasn’t done much of recently. He taps into his savage side, making references to his Larsa and Scottie Pippen scandal in the opening track “Rent Money” and nods to his roots so to say with “Supper Trapper” and “Scrape.” This album feels like a mix tape through it’s inclusion of skits and rough cuts. It brings with it a feeling of nostalgia and is a reminder of the earlier work Future created with lyrics centered around drug use and women. As if releasing two albums within a week of each other isn’t an impressive feat, add to it the addition of music videos for “Draco,” “Super Trapper,” and “Poppin Tags.”
As for HNDRXX, Future makes the love album that Honest and even songs from Pluto could never measure up to. The album dives deeper into Future’s psyche taking a look at the mistakes he’s made. He alludes to this in the final song on the album “Sorry,” apologizing to all the girls he has hurt in life and love. While not as brash and petty as he has been in the past, Future also touches on his relationship with Ciara in, “My Collection” and references his beef with her new husband, Russel Wilson, in “Masks Off.” HNDRXX brings melodic vibes that give us an introspective look at his heartbreak backed by R&B sounding beats.
Together, both albums play on the versatility Future has as an artist and rapper. Future brings with it trap bangers and rugged mix tape style cuts. They add absolutely no emotional depth, and yet that doesn’t matter. Listening to this brings back the old Future, the Future that everyone was excited about around 2010-2013, before he was the mainstream artist he is today. HNDRXX does the same but in the opposite way. It’s the Future we wanted with Honest, that carries song filled with emotions of lust and regret.
Years of experience in the industry and a record of ups and downs (which if we’re being honest are more ups), Future’s momentum has been steadily growing. If these albums are any indication of what is to come, it’s that he’s only getting better. As Jeff Weiss said in his album review on Complex, “But this is Future, and the first rule of FutureHive is that you can’t doubt Future.”
Be sure to check out Future this summer on tour with Migos, Tory Lanez, and Kodak Black (with appearances from Young Thug and ASAP Ferg in some cities)