Finally, Offset has dropped his long-awaited album and I can complete my trilogy of reviews on the three men of Migos. Offset is the last to face the hot-seat following the releases of Quavo’s QUAVO HUNCHO and Takeoff’s The Last Rocket late last year. The initial release date was set to be on his birthday back in December, but with the highly publicised split between Offset and his wife, Cardi B, it was postponed by over two months. So, was his album worth the wait?
Before answering this question, let me divulge a bit. The 16-track album is named FATHER OF 4 and appears to be a romantic nod to both his kids and his wife. Sadly, it falls short of this and, despite its confessional nature, Offset fails to execute this sincerely. FATHER OF 4 begins with a seemingly adorable tribute to his four children, rather appropriately named Father of 4. This includes the extremely touching lyrics addressed to his daughter Kalea: ‘Tell the truth, I ain’t really know if I was your father’. I feel Offset struggles to escape the reality of what his listeners may have come to expect as a dichotomy exists between Father of 4 and the classic ‘sex, drugs and money’ motivated lyrics in Tats On My Face: ‘Chasing the bag, I race (Bag), I make a plain b**** great (Plain b****)’. Songs such as this are unnecessary fillers on what could be a sentimental album, which leads me to question Offset’s use (or lack) of imagination throughout. Lick and Made Men are already titles of tracks by Cardi B and the Migos respectively and, from experience, things are never as good the second-time around.
With regards to the features, they are mostly good. Cee Lo Green makes an unusual appearance and it works, his song North Star contains beautiful melodies. London’s very own 21 Savage teams up with Travis Scott for Legacy and, in turn, they provide Offset with the momentum he lacks on his own. Savage is especially engaging as his voice is so distinct. Other features include J. Cole, Gunna, Gucci Mane, and would it really be an Offset album without a collab from Cardi B? The couple come together to duet Clout – possibly a reason for his inability to release in December when they broke up. Along with this hardly outstanding track, Offset also dedicates Don’t Lose Me to Cardi but, after his distasteful gate-crash of her concert, it seems the odds of her even shaking him long enough to lose him are slim. Although, what I find most interesting about the collabs on FATHER OF 4 is the absence of Offset’s band-member and relative, Takeoff, whilst Quavo is featured in On Fleek. This led me to notice how Offset was also not present on The Last Rocket, yet both men have tracks on QUAVO HUNCHO. Thus, Quavo is arguably the glue to this Atlanta-based group.
Let’s now turn our attention towards the production of the album as Offset made it clear in a tweet that the ‘ALBUM [IS] ONLY PRODUCED BY METRO & SOUTHSIDE’ and they make a debut as the production duo So Icey Boyz. However, two tracks stand out, not only as the best on the album, but also as the only two not produced by Metro Boomin or Southside. Credit must therefore be sent in the direction of Dre Moon and SwaVay for their energetic and original production of Lick and Came A Long Way. The final track, Came A Long Way, depicts how far Offset has come since his car crash and fortunately saves the album at the last minute with its Culture II style beat and ad libs.
Albeit Offset’s album has become a grower, it still feels like something is missing (in the form of his two band-members) as both QUAVO HUNCHO, The Last Rocket and FATHER OF 4 lack the energy and presence that the group so evidently carry as a whole. Take, for example, their most recent release Position To Win where they bring it with a futuristic-style synth and a mad beat. I concluded in my last review (of Takeoff’s album) that: ‘Whilst the bar has not been set high, added pressure has now been placed on Offset to deliver in his upcoming album and thus defend the Migos’ position in hip-hop’. Quite frankly, I am disappointed that FATHER OF 4 has reinforced my initial thought that each individual member of Migos lacks the ability as a solo artist. So, in answer to my previous question, I can think of better things to spend two months waiting on.
By Char Stape