Moneybagg Yo Sticks to His Comfort Zone With ‘Reset’ Album
With how prolific Moneybagg Yo has been in the past few years, it's hard to believe that he's just now getting his major label debut album. The Memphis native has dropped 10 mixtapes since 2016, including last year's Federal 3X, which debuted at No. 5 on the Billboard 200. The Interscope-distributed artist has blessed his peers with countless guest verses. Reset, Moneybagg's maiden studio LP, has been a long time coming, and the 27-year-old trapper delivers a solid outing.
Much of Reset boils down to tough talking and flossing over trap beats. There are love songs ("In Her Voice," "Tryna Do") and more introspective tracks ("7even," which prominently features a Tupac Shakur vocal sample) but Yo is at his best when he's just boasting.
"Can't have that strap in certain states, but it stay with me/It got 30 shots on it like a Curry jersey," he raps on "Curry Jersey," a nod to NBA superstar Steph Curry. Moneybagg boasts about "corporate thuggin', sippin' lean out a coffee mug (at meetings)" on the album's title track. Elsewhere, he flips off the record business with "Industry." On album intro "Oh Fuck," his rhymes and ad libs blur into each other so much that it's almost like he's having a conversation with himself.
Others chip in, too. J. Cole appears on "Say Na," adapting his flow and content to fit a trap song. Yet you might get the feeling that Moneybagg works best with more like-minded creators like Future, who shows up on "Chanel Junkie" and "Okay." Kevin Gates shines on "Fall Down," while YG and Kodak Black have brief-but-memorable turns on "Curry Jersey" and "Lower Level," respectively.
The sound of Reset doesn't musically verge outside of the standard trap fare but it's a production style that works well for Moneybagg. DrumGod is credited as a producer on six tracks, including highlights like the sinister "Say Na" beat and the sunny "In Her Voice." Javar Rockamore, Tay Keith, Wheezy, Southside and others also contribute to the project.
One of the biggest strengths of Reset is Moneybagg's timing. Not just when it comes to his delivery as a rapper, but also when he's constructing songs. The album's 15 tracks spans 45 minutes—he works well with brevity. The track starts, he lays down a hook, drops a couple verses and gets out. At a time when so many efforts sprawl well over an hour, it's refreshing to hear a concise, simple and focused project.
Still, it would be nice if Moneybagg Yo were just a bit more ambitious on Reset. Though this has been marketed as his debut album, there's not much here that sets it apart from his previous material. It's another quality release from a consistent rapper, but it's not quite the grand statement one might expect from an artist's debut. For an album called Reset, it's much of the same from Moneybagg Yo.
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