Young Thug’s Young Stoner Life collective is back with their second-ever compilation album, Slime Language 2. After months of anticipation and speculation, the record finally dropped yesterday with 23 songs and an absolutely star-studded tracklist, headlined by guest appearances from Kid Cudi, Drake, Travis Scott, Future, and Lil Uzi Vert. With Thugger, Gunna, and the rest of the crew joined by some of the game’s hottest artists, will YSL be able to make one of the best compilations ever?
Through one hour and 15 minutes of run time, YSL thrives through the spirit of collaboration. From top to bottom, the chemistry and showmanship each name brings to the table captures the pinnacle of what hip hop’s about. With Young Thug and his protegee’s one-of-a-kind aura embedded through each track, these moments are portrayed in the most exciting way possible. At the heart of this maddening fun, Young Thug further solidifies himself as one of traps kings, but Gunna’s performance is nearly just as important. The record’s second track, “Ski,” sets the precedent for this standard as the two’s braggadocios lyrics and charming charisma mesh together seamlessly, as Mr. Wunna only continues to show his artistic growth and development. Through the rest of the experience, the two are only elevated to even further heights from prolific performances from both in-house names like Yak Gotti on “Take It To Trial” or outside guests such as Lil Baby on “Paid the Fine”.
While we all know how good Thugger and Gunna are at this point, the same can’t be said for the rest of the YSL crew. Most fans know what names like Lil Keed and Lil Duke can offer, but as the rest of the roster goes, they remain relatively unknown. Adding to Young Thug’s leadership, he’s able to have him and his stars step away and let the crew he’s built and developed have their chance to shine. While this is a noble move on paper, it ends up being hit or miss as far as its effect on the overall quality being driven. Names like Unfook, Yung Kayo, and even Thug’s own fiancee Karlae all carry their own weight when utilized, but others, including Thug’s own sister Dolly White and T-Shyne, end up damaging the experience with their lackluster showings. Fortunately, this issue gets drowned out by the slew of top-tier features from A-list rappers.
As far as the out-of-house features go, this is Slime Language 2’s bread and butter. Aside from an absolutely horrific hook and verse from Future on “Superstar,” every big-name doesn’t just show up, they nail their showings out of the park. As soon as Travis Scott takes over with his memorizing finale at the end of Thug and Gunna’s “Diamonds Dancing,” it’s clear the guests will only continue to amaze through the rest of the record’s duration. This principle yet again withholds through prolific performances such as Drake’s on “Solid,” Coi Leray on “I Like,” and even YMW Melly on “Really Be Slime”. There are even some unexpected guests that end up thriving in the YSL system, like Rowdy Rebel, Skepta, Sheck Wes, Meek Mill, and Big Sean. Even Nav manages to show up on “Pots N Pans”. When it comes to the best of these collabs made in heaven, Lil Uzi’s melodic hook and joyous make him Young Thug and Yung Kayko the team to beat on “Proud of You”. Even better than this, “Moon Man” ends up being the surprise of the entire record as we see Kid Cudi bring the best out of Thug in this amazing psychedelic banger. Bringing such a talented group to compliment him and his crew, Slime Language gets a special quality many albums can’t compete with.
Behind the boards, 43 producers combine their efforts to compliment the Slat crew with the perfect score to carry out their vision. From Wheezy to Southside, some of the highest-profile beatmakers in all of trap are utilized to craft the perfect backdrops. Turbo’s “Solid” was a clear standout with its distorted chords, smooth trap drums, and tropical bongo insertions that complement Drake, Gunna, and Thug to perfection in one of the project’s defining moments. The track’s follow-up, “Came and Saw,” is just as good with its triumphant horn refrain and hard-hitting drums. The spacey “Proud of You” was a definite outlier in the pack as it chooses to embody Uzi’s signature sound and fuses it with the vibrant joy of Thugs vocals to birth an otherwordly atmosphere. As far as the rest of the record goes, some songs create super intuitive soundscapes like “Pots N Pans” and “Really Be Slime,” while others do the bare minimum. Speaking for recent trap albums, the production is excellent, and the fact that most of the instrumentals sound at least fairly creative is a pro in itself when looking at the rest of the competition.
Besides the bloated tracklist and unknown artists failing to deliver enjoyable verses and hooks, it’s hard to find any other major flaws with Slime Language 2. Young Thug really straps you in for what feels like a roller coaster ride of an experience, and once settled in, you never look back as the constant action keeps you on the edge of your seat. Looking at the current scape of 2021, it’s safe to say SL2 is trap album of the year.
- Young Thug & Gunna deliver amazing performances
- Great production job for trap standards
- A-list features constantly steal the show
- Masterfully captures the art of collaborating
- Not many hip hop records are more fun to listen to
- YSL artists performances are very hit or miss
- Tracklist should have cut down a decent amount
Written and Reviewed by: Mr. Fantastic, owner and founder of Fantastic Hip Hop