Album Review | Vince Staples – FM!

This album was released on November 2nd this year. I didn’t end up reviewing Vince Staples’ previous album, Big Fish Theory, but I have listened to it. It’s not really that good to me. I didn’t really like the EDM style he went for with the production. It was cool for him to try something new, but it just didn’t really work for me. There are some songs on it that I like though. Anyway, this album was announced fairly recently. I had no idea it even existed until a few hours before it came out. It doesn’t seem like a regular album. Just looking at the tracklist, it comes off more like a compilation than a proper solo album. I don’t know how I’m gonna feel about it. I’m sure it won’t be trash. I just don’t know if I’m gonna really think it’s that good. We’ll see though.

1. Feels Like Summer featuring Ty$ produced by Kenny Beats

This song opens up with some speech from Big Boy. Given the title, it makes sense that this album would follow a radio theme. I like the bouncy production from Kenny Beats. Vince’s flow was pretty nice on the first verse. I’m not crazy about the sung hook from Ty$, but it’s not that bad. He sounds really good when he’s providing background vocals during the verses. The title of this song had me thinking this was gonna be a really poppy track. Vince is still kinda rapping about street shit in the verses though. I enjoyed this track. This shit is dope to me.

2. Outside! produced by Kenny Beats

The previous track transitions into this track pretty well thanks to the outro from Big Boy. This track has another bouncy beat. I don’t like it as much as the previous one, but it’s still pretty good. The first verse from Vince was gangsta as hell. This is a really hard song. The hook is nothing special, but it works. The second verse was cool. Vince flowed like a faucet over this beat. I don’t think this song is as good as the previous track, but I still enjoyed it. This shit is dope to me.

3. Don’t Get Chipped featuring Jay Rock produced by Kenny Beats & CuBeatz

The beat on this track is cool. It’s not that different from the previous couple of beats stylistically. This song is gangsta as fuck lyrically. I love it. I really like Vince’s delivery on this track too. It’s kind of Danny Brownish. His two verses on this song are really good. I’m kind of disappointed that Jay Rock only did the hook. A verse from him would’ve been the icing on the cake. Vince’s verses suffice I guess. This is a pretty good song. I fuck with it. It’s dope.

4. Relay produced by Hagler

This track easily has the best beat on the whole album so far. It’s dope af. I just listened to this entire track. It’s pretty good. It’s probably my favorite song on the album so far to be honest. The production is fantastic, and the verses are gangsta as hell. I just wish they were a bit longer. I like the hook on this song, but I got kind of tired of it by the time it was over. This is still one of the best tracks on the album though. I fuck with it. It’s dope.

5. New earlsweatshirt (Interlude) produced by Kenny Beats

This is a 23 second long snippet of some unreleased Earl Sweatshirt music, and it sounds fucking glorious. It was cool to hear him over the hard hitting percussion from Kenny Beats. This was an awesome interlude.

6. Run the Bands produced by Hagler

The beat on this track is pretty cool. I’m not really feelin’ the hook on this song, but it’s not terrible. The two verses are pretty good. This song isn’t really doin’ it for me though. I like the verses, but the production got old pretty quickly, and I wasn’t really feelin’ the repetitive hook. I don’t really think this is a bad song, but it’s not something I’ll be returning to. It’s a decent song. Just not for me.

7. FUN! featuring E-40 produced by Kenny Beats & Hagler

The beat on this track is nothing special, but it works. The first verse from Vince was pretty hard. The hook is fine I guess. It’s pretty repetitive. The second verse was pretty good. E-40’s verse was nothing special. He wasn’t really rapping. He was just repeating the same lines over and over again. It wasn’t really a proper verse. It’s fine though. I think this is a pretty solid track. It’s slightly above average. It’s definitely not one of my favorite songs on the album, but I enjoyed it to some extent. It’s cool.

8. No Bleedin’ featuring Kamaiyah produced by Kenny Beats

I really love the beat on this track. It’s dope af. The repetitive hook on this track is nothing special, but it’s not really bad. The first verse from Vince was cool. The melodic second verse from Kamaiyah wasn’t bad. This is a really short song. It’s just over two minutes long. There’s not really much to discuss. There are just two verses, which are both pretty short. The production is great though. I enjoyed this track. It’s dope.

9. Brand New Tyga (Interlude) produced by Kenny Beats

This is a short snippet of an unreleased Tyga song. It’s okay I guess. It just sounds like a typical Tyga track. It’s not anything special. The Earl snippet was obviously better, which should come as no surprise. This wasn’t actually bad though. It just didn’t excite me at all.

10. (562) 453-9382 (Skit) produced by Kenny Beats

This is a skit in which some guy named Christian calls into Big Boy’s Neighborhood and completely fails at a game of 7 in 7. He was supposed to name seven famous people whose names start with the letter V in seven seconds, and all he got was Vanessa Williams. I would’ve failed too, but I would’ve at least gotten more than him. Vince Staples, Vic Mensa, Venus Williams, Vince McMahon, Vanessa Hudgens… That’s all I can think of right now. Anyway, I’m not mad at this skit. Obviously it’s not something I’ll be listening to again, but I don’t mind it being here.

11. Tweakin’ featuring Vonnie, Buddy & Kehlani produced by Kenny Beats & KillaGraham

This is the longest song on the album. It’s the only track to reach three minutes in length. The beat’s pretty dope. The vocals on the intro from Buddy were nothing special. The first verse from Vince was really good. I’m actually surprised by how good the hook from Kehlani is too. She sang her ass off. The second verse from Vince was really good too. This is definitely one of the best tracks on the album. There’s not really anything I dislike about it. This is dope.

This is a pretty good project. It feels like a short mixtape rather than a full fledged album. None of the songs on this project were super impressive, but I don’t think any of the songs are actually bad. I gotta say I actually kinda liked the radio theme he had going with this album. It made the transitions between each track sound pretty smooth. I think Vince sounds pretty good over Kenny Beats’ production. However, the highlight of this album was honestly the short Earl Sweatshirt snippet. That was the most exciting moment on the album for me. You can tell that he didn’t put as much time and effort into this album as he did with his other albums. Like I said, there’s only one song on the entire project that reaches three minutes in length. It kinda feels like a quick compilation of half finished songs he had sitting around on a hard drive. I enjoyed it overall though. Most of the songs here are pretty good. This project is dope.

Favorite Song: Tweakin’
Least Favorite Song: Run the Bands




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