Rating: 5.5 // 10
Genres: Alt. R&B, Pop-Rap, Trap Rap
Released: 26/06/20, Interscope
6LACK gives us a weak offering consisting of dropped tracks and leaks, highlighting a trend towards trap-rap from one of Alternative R&B’s rising stars.
To pretend 6LACK hasn’t dabbled with the sound of trap before would be denying history – a brief glance down the feature list of East Atlanta Love Letter from 2018 tells us otherwise by sight alone. Future, Offset, and even J Cole, all established in the sound.
But there were enough attempts and ideas to keep the sound at bay, and avoid it overwhelming everything else on the tracklist.
Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for 6pc Hot. The opening track of ATL Freestyle, a song we already had heard before, leans more towards R&B than strictly hip-hop, but already we can hear the overuse of autotune and manipulation over the Atlanta native’s vocals.
It sort of ends without an impression, whilst beginning the downward trend of reliance on autotune.
I was relatively intrigued by 6LACK’s last LP, but to me this feels like the weakest aspects of that record has been explored on this EP.
Long Nights is another song that isn’t repulsively awful, just disappointing compared to 6LACK’s admittedly short back catalogue.
It does feed into the general feeling of moody reminiscence, but there aren’t any super interesting lyrical ideas, or indeed any moments at all that really catch me. I’ll give it points for how it flows into Float, which is a slight improvement in itself.
It is the best track on the album by far, but isn’t saying much. It strips back the hi hats and snare pattern and follows more R&B stylings.
The song has a far more interesting concept that is more tightly followed, and the switch up on delivery is interesting.
But we’re straight back into the formula for Know My Rights, which features the albums only guest artist, Lil Baby. I haven’t really got anything to say about this track, it is basic, simple, and over quickly.
Elephant In The Room again occupies that gap of trap influenced R&B, without really breaking the mould. It’s an okay track.
The final track Outside is an interesting take on being separated from a loved one during quarantine. The lyrics are subtle and not on the nose like seemingly every other track written during this timeframe, which I do appreciate.
It sounds the most personal and has the feel of intimacy, and best of all, there isn’t a hi-hat and snare pattern in sight.
Unfortunately this is a downgrade on his previous LP, and if it is a precursor to his third full length project, I have my concerns about the direction of it. However, there is still potential here, and I hope that 6LACK can find some new spark to drive his future music.
- ATL Freestyle (C)
- Long Nights (C-)
- Float (C+)
- Know My Rights (D+)
- Elephant In The Room (C)
- Outside (C)