21 Savage, Offset & Metro Boomin, Without Warning | Album Review
Rappers 21 Savage and Offset, with Metro Boomin behind the boards, collaborate on a hot, surprise mixtape, ‘Without Warning.’
Without Warning. That’s exactly how Without Warning, the collaborative album/mixtape between 21 Savage, Offset, and Metro Boomin arrived on October 31, 2017. All parties involved have had plenty of success throughout the course of the year prior to Without Warning. 21 Savage has had plenty of success with his debut album, Issa Album, spawning a hit with “Bank Account.” Offset has collaborated with a number of artists, not to mention the success of Migos with Culture and no. 1 hit, “Bad and Boujee.” Metro Boomin has produced for numerous artists – his bank account shouldn’t be hurting in the least. The three make a formidable trio throughout Without Warning.
Things get started off superbly with “Ghostface Killers” featuring Travis Scott. Offset handles the hard-hitting hook, following up with verse dropping Patek, Michael Jackson, and Adidas. 21 Savage follows, in his normal dead-pan approach. While this didn’t always work on Issa Album, it’s endearing here. Travis Scott caps off the gem on the third verse, referencing Tom Cruise and Nike (“Nike boys, we don’t do three stripes”).
“Rap Saved Me,” featuring Quavo keeps the momentum going strong. 21 Savage handles most of the hook duties, but Offset contributes with sound effects and ad libs. Against a killer Metro Boomin beat, Savage packs a punch, even if he fails be aggressive or dramatic. This is the crowning achievement. Once more, Offset takes first blood on the first verse, followed by 21 Savage. Quavo arrives for the third and final verse.
“Ric Flair Drip”
Offset goes solo on the short and sweet “Ric Flair Drip.” Once more, a catchy chorus fuels the fire. Even so, he’s slick and chocked-full of game on the verses. The production, handled by Metro Boomin and Bijan Amir, is smooth and luxurious – in a southern-rap sort of way. 21 Savage matches Offset on his own solo outing, “My Choppa Hate N*ggas.” This sounds as if it would’ve been at home on Issa Album. Again, his delivery stands out, in a positive light. His lyrics aren’t nearly as positive, of course:
“Finna open up a morgue, all this damn beef / Choppa with the sword, Game of Thrones .223.”
“My Choppa Hate N*ggas” segues into “Nightmare,” another solo cut for Offset. Safe to say, he’s on autopilot. His agile flow shines like a beacon. The hook is fire:
“Freddy Kruger, give ‘em a nightmare / Soon as you close your eyes, n*gga, we right there.”
“Mad Stalkers” finally reunites all parties. 21 Savage drops a killer hook:
“B*tch I’m mad balling, all my diamonds mad flawless / We got mad choppers, all my n*ggas mad cautious / I got mad dick, turning these hoes into mad stalkers / I got mad dick, turning these hoes into mad stalkers.”
Neither rapper offers up anything brand-new on their respective verses, but the flex-fest continues. Offset spits about Mad Max, lean, Gang-gang, and drugs, while 21 Savage mentions his watch, private jets, and choppers.
“Disrespectful” gives another joint banger, albeit it brief. They switch up the order, with 21 Savage dropping the heat first. Among standout lines: “Take a project b*tch, and get her flooded out / You can build a bear, f*ck it, I’m finna build a thot.” On the second verse, Offset proclaims “I’m drinking codeine for breakfast.” It’s certainly not the first time that lean has been mentioned on Without Warning.
“Run up the Racks” gives 21 Savage his second solo turn, following “My Choppa Hate N*ggas.” The effect is the same: solid, hypnotic flow, albeit deadpan, without offering much brand-new or awe-inspiring. Offset returns on the slow, but enticing “Still Serving.” 21’s hook lays back, chilled out, but the allure is in full force. As he tells it, “My uncle just turned 49 and he still serving.” For the millionth time, Offset mentions a Patek. They close things out with the slick, turned up “Darth Vader.”
All in all, 21 Savage, Offset, and Metro Boomin put together an enjoyable, worthwhile mixtape. Without Warming won’t change any lives, but it showcases the best of all parties involved. Offset has a mad flow, 21 Savage has a dark charm with his delivery, while Metro Boomin holds it all together with sick production work.
Gems: “Ghostface Killers,” “Rap Saved Me,” “Mad Stalkers” & “Run up the Racks”
21 Savage, Offset & Metro Boomin • Without Warning • Epic / Motown / Capitol / Republic • Release: 10.31.17
Photo Credits: Epic / Motown / Capitol / Republic