Usually the goal of a creative individual is to progress artistically, making something more interesting than you did on your last project, and even if the public doesn’t perceive your end goal your personal satisfaction from the artistic effort makes it worthwhile. I say “usually” because I’ve had a hard time perceiving that artistic progress from Michael Ray Stevenson b/k/a Tyga. At first it felt like he got a break in the music business because of his family relations, but there was still a spark of talent in his music to suggest he could become something greater. The closest we got to him achieving that potential was on “Careless World,” and since then he’s actually been regressing BACKWARD artistically. He’s now less interesting than when he first started. He raps constantly about how much money he has and how much sex he gets in a seemingly uninspired monotone flow. You could call it “progress” in a sense though, because each album has become progressively harder to listen to from start to finish.
We’re not off to a good start on “Bitch I’m the S–t 2” when the first thing I select immediately makes me think of Ma$e and leaves me concluding that Mason Betha had more personality and flow, when I used to think HE was monotone and boring. You can’t help it though when “Move to L.A.” jacks the exact same sample as Betha’s “What You Want” single featuring Total – Curtis Mayfield’s “Right on for the Darkness.” I’m seriously dumbfounded that I’m one song into this album and Tyga has been shown up by Ma$e of all f–king people. I’m not sure how to take that other than to think he and I would have both been better off if this song hadn’t been included.
Right now I’m not high on Crakwav as a producer, but given he’s got the majority of the production credits on “BITS2” he’s got plenty more chances to impress me. “Bel Air” with Quavo started out sounding like a parody of Roger Troutman though, and immediately turned into that AutoTune mumble rap that’s so hard to listen to. I had to hit skip immediately and move on. Amazingly the next song “Run it Back” featuring Young Thug was even WORSE. We’re no longer waiting for Tyga to devolve from album to album – he’s doing it right before our eyes in the middle of one release. I’m going to cite some “lyrics” here if you can even call what Tyga is saying on this track “lyrical” and let you be the judge.
“We at the rich suites, like it’s Peachtree
We gon’ run it up like floor seats
Nigga got game, I’m like Gucci Mane
She a keeper mane, she go both ways
Make her fall in love, f–k, smoke a blunt
Now when we drunk, wake that p—y up
Too high to sleep, wetting all the sheets
That’s a kitty call, just unplug the phone
Gucci bag call, Gucci bag cash
Reaching for my phone, let me record that ass”
“Let me record that ass.” I’m not sure whether #facepalm or #headdesk is more appropriate but both of them express my feelings right now, and Crakwav continues to show me little to nothing as a producer. “Playboy” may be the first thing he got right but that’s because he loops a simple three-note melody over a bassline and doesn’t try to get any cuter than throwing drums on and off it. I wish I could say Tarentino was a fresh change of pace, but it’s hard to tell because Tyga sounds like he’s trying to rap the whole song like Kanye West’s “Mercy” and it just gets on my last nerve. Even a cameo by Vince Staples can’t save this one.
Speaking of Kanye, he produces and raps on “Feel Me” and it winds up being one of the album’s lone highlights, even if it comes off like a lesser imitation of ScHoolboy Q’s “THat Part.” That’s the problem with “BITS2” though – nearly everything Tyga does winds up sounding like a less impressive version of a style and sound somebody else did better. Imitation is supposed to be the sincerest form of flattery but now it winds up as something else altogether and the ideal word for it is LAZY. Even the better songs like “Gone Too Far” sound like Tyga parodying himself on his crossover hit “Racks.” Sampling from Trick Daddy’s “Nann” for a song of the same name just makes me wish I was listening to Trick Daddy instead. Having Pusha T cameo on “Ski on the Slope” just makes me wish I was listening to Pusha T instead. Tyga intentionally or unintentionally undercuts himself at every turn and at 53 minutes I’ve finally reached a critical mass where I no longer have the desire to listen to him any more – which probably means this will be his best selling album to date. The same thing happened when I got fed up with the Black Eyed Peas.