Rae Sremmurd, SremmLife 2 | Album Review
After being delayed, southern rap duo Rae Sremmurd finally release their sophomore album, SremmLife 2. SremmLife 2 naturally follow up SremmLife.
Profundity definitely isn’t part of the Sremm Life. No way Jose! The Sremm Life is relatively simple… hella stupid. After getting folks on board on hits like “No Flex Zone” and “This Could Be Us,” southern party rap duo Rae Sremmurd return with their delayed sophomore album, SremmLife 2. Does Rae Sremmurd step their game up on album no. 2? Hmm…it has its moments.
“Start A Party” initiates SremmLife2 “hard.” Though respectable, the opener doesn’t feel like a surefire hit. Regardless, it’s a flex-fest, and Rae Sremmurd love flex-fests. The minor key, malicious sounding production carries over into “Real Chill,” featuring Kodak Black. In Rae Sremmurd’s eyes, it all seems pretty simple:
“My homies the real deal, we smokin’ that kill-kill / she shake it, it feel real / the paper flowin’ still, now that b*tch wanna chill / damn, this sh*t stay chill…”
“Real Chill” ranks among the best of SremmLife 2. It’s hard, infectious, and chocked full of swag. Can’t beat the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reference!
“By Chance” exemplifies typical Mike WiLL Made It production work. Like the previous two joints, it thrives off a catchy hook. It lacks profundity, but no one expects seriousness from the duo. “Look Alive” is arguably the very best of SremmLife 2. Slow and chill, Swae sensationally sings the infectious hook that latches the first time you hear it.
“I’m so far out of sight / yeah that sounds about right / kill this cup, not my vibe / be the highlight of my night / look alive, look alive / we can start with something light / I can get you so right / I just need an invite”
The quirky “Black Beatles,” featuring Gucci Mane, keeps the momentum rolling. Essentially, it’s all about money and irresponsible fun.
“I’m a f*ckin’ black Beatle, cream seats in the Regal / rockin’ John Lennon lenses like to see ‘em spread eagle.”
“Shake It Fast,” featuring Juicy J, is the prototypical booty anthem. P-popping anthems are commonplace in rap music (understatement), and while “Shake It Fast” is no exception, it’s fun. “Set The Roof” swaps Juicy for Lil Jon, who “sets the roof on fire” – there’s no better way to describe it. “Set The Roof” has hit potential, like most DJ Mustard productions (co-produced with Mike WiLL), but doesn’t distinguish itself from umpteen similar joints.
A production change on “Came A Long Way” successfully shakes things up. Clearly featuring a more serious tone, the come-up driven “Came A Long Way” is no savior, but sufficient. Mike WiLL returns to the boards on the slow and relaxed “Now That I Know.”
Standard vs. Deluxe Versions
“Take It Or Leave It” and “Do Yoga” conclude the standard edition of SremmLife 2. Both tracks fit the typical Rae Sremmurd script. That said, neither eclipses the best songs, namely “Look Alive” and “Black Beatles.” The deluxe edition of SremmLife 2 adds bonus tracks “Over Here” (featuring Bobo Swae), “Swang,” and “Just Like Us.” Super fans may appreciate the extra dose of the duo, but the 11-track version is sufficient.
Ultimately, how does SremmLife 2 stack up? A passionate non-fan of their debut, the chances for SremmLife 2 to “tickle my fancy” seemed very slim. It’s not the most profound album of 2016 by any means, but SremmLife 2 has its moments. There were more hits on SremmLife looking back, but SL2 has the potential, at least in the club.
Gems: “Real Chill,” “Look Alive,” “Black Beatles” & “Shake It Fast”