Album Review: Migos - Culture III
Written By: Mike Double G
Grade = 84% or 4 ⭐️
Track List - 1 hour 15 minutes
Avalanche 3:26 ✅
Having Our Way (Feat. Drake) 4:38 ⭐️
Straightenin 4:15 ⭐️
Type Shit (Migos & Cardi B) 3:10 ⭐️
Malibu (Feat. Polo G) 4:09 ✅
Birthday 3:47 ⭐️
Modern Day 4:02 ⭐️
Vaccine 3:42 ✅
Picasso (Migos & Future) 3:33 ⭐️
Roadrunner 4:17 ✅
What You See (Migos & Justin Bieber) 3:00 ✅
Jane 3:22 ❌
Antisocial (Feat. Juice WRLD) 4:22 ✅
Why Not 3:49 ⭐️
Mahomes 5:08 ❌
Handle My Business 4:38 ❌
Time For Me 3:59 ✅
Light It Up (Migos & Pop Smoke) 4:29 ✅
Need It (ft. YoungBoy Never Broke Again) 3:16 ⭐️
It’s been 3 and a half years since the Migos' last released a LP. Over that time a lot of people started to doubt them and the top artists from Quality Control had been surpassed by label mate Lil Baby. There second LP Culture earned them a Grammy nomination, but there third album Culture II didn’t do as well. Many called Culture III a make or break album for the trio and the Migos were able to deliver.
The biggest knock on Culture II was the length of the album. The album had a lot of good music, but also had a lot of fillers. On Culture III the Migos shrunk the track list down from 24 to 19 songs and more importantly they trimmed 30 minutes off the total run time. The group also had a good feature ratio as they had guest appearances on 8 of the 19 songs. Features included frequent collaborators Drake and Cardi B but most of the artists on this album have never appeared on a Migos album. The new artists included Polo G, Future, Justin Bieber, NBA YoungBoy, Juice WRLD, and Pop Smoke.
Of the group members only Quavo has worked with a couple of these artists. Justin Bieber and Quavo have demonstrated great chemistry on DJ Khaled’s hit songs I’m the One and No Brainer. Quavo also made a lot of music with the late Pop Smoke before his passing. He appeared on Pop Smoke’s mixtape Meet the Woo 2 on the song Shake the Room”. With that song having so much success, executive producer 50 Cent decided to put Quavo on Pop Smoke’s debut album three different times. On Shoot For The Stars Aim For The Moon Quavo is featured on Aim For The Moon, Snitching, and West Coast Shit”. All three of these songs were strong tracks.
Every collaboration on this album was a success. My favorite was Having Our Way which featured Drake. The Migos and Drake have had a close relationship ever since he appeared on the Versace Remix. They have been on tour together and also made Walk It, Talk It which was a single on Culture II. Although the Migos have a very original style they seem to have great chemistry with Drake. To no ones surprise Having Our Way was the second song on the album. This could be the best song on the album. Drake has the chorus and a verse while each of the Migos have there own verse. This could have easily been meant for Drake’s upcoming album Certified Lover Boy.
Cardi B, Future, and NBA YoungBoy also delivered particularly well on this project. Cardi’s feature wasn’t a surprise but Future and YoungBoy were two guys we weren’t expecting. One thing the Migo’s proved on this album is that they are in-tuned with the hip-hop culture and know who’s hot in the game. Every artist who appeared on this album was an “A-List” artist. Besides features, the Migo’s brought there “A” Game. 4 of the best songs on this album had no features. Those songs include Straightenin, Birthday, Modern Day and Why Not.
So far I’ve seen nothing but praise from music critics. Even JAY-Z chimed in as he praised the song Avalanche. On Friday Quavo went online to post a message from HOV which said:
That Avalanche song is beautiful. Congrats to you and the guys on the album. Peace God!
This track is the first song on the album and it sets the tone for the rest of the project. On the final installment of the Culture trilogy the Migo’s went with a different sound. This album doesn’t sound like a typical “Culture” album. As far as rapping and presentation it seems as though the group went back to there old roots. On the production side we get some new fire from DJ Durel and Murda Beatz. The Migo’s are definitely still rapping about things like money, jewelry, and success but there is more diversity this time around. We still get the trap talk we love as well as personal content talking about things such as drug use, heartbreak, and loss.
Even the music videos look vintage Migos. They have a nostalgic feel to them that make them seem like they were filmed a long time ago. In the Straightenin video you see the group outside of a Trap-house or what they would call the Bando”. In the song Time For Me Quavo says:
In the bando I hated starvin. So many late nights I had to lock in. Spinnin' and finessin' niggas, robbin.
After there blow up in 2017 the Migos went into Culture II talking about there success. Most of the songs on Culture II talked about money, jewelry, cars, and clothes which made the album feel repetitive and boring. This time around the Migo’s went back to there past and reminded fans that before the fame and fortune they really came from the hood. Culture III has a nice balance of the two.
We also see the Migos formula change up. Most of the Migos hit songs has Quavo on the first verse (as well as the chorus), Offset on the second verse, and Takeoff on the third verse. On this album we see the guys mix it up. The change that happens most is Takeoff taking the first or second verse while Offset takes the third. This was a smart move as it allows Takeoff to show off his skills. A lot of listeners will turn off a song before the third verse is over. This is particularly true for the Migos since they tend to have longer songs due to having three members. Putting a more popular member of the group last will make listeners want to hear the whole song.
After listening to this album, I came to the conclusion that it’s almost impossible to top the original Culture album. Like many artists, the first album is usually the best. However, Culture III was definitely better than Culture II. The work load was shared equally for the most part. Quavo accounted for 9 of the hooks compared to Offset’s 4 and Takeoff’s 1. Takeoff was able to make up for the lack of hooks by having the most verses of any member. Offset did not have as many hooks as Quavo or as many verses as Takeoff but he did have two of the best verses on Straightening and Modern Day. Two of the best songs on the album. Offset also showed great chemistry with NBA YoungBoy on the song Need It. While most of the verses were solo there were a few occasions where the members went back and forth on a verse. Takeoff and Quavo did this on the first verse of Type Shit. Takeoff also did this with Offset on the second verse of Picasso. Every member of the group appeared on every song except Offset who was not on Antisocial.
Migos proved something on this album. Offset proved he is the most popular member of the group. His relationship with Cardi B allows him to stay in the spotlight and his bad boy persona also makes him most appealing to the streets. Takeoff proved once again that he is still the best rapper of the group. Takeoff had the best solo album and has the best chance of becoming a rapstar if he pursues a solo career. Quavo showed that he still has millions of melodies. There are a few times on this album where Quavo actually sings while not using the Auto-Tune, or at least less of it. Whether it be in rap or pop, Huncho will stay relevant by using his versatility. Don’t be surprised if Quavo has his own label someday. They call him “Huncho” because he is the leader of the group and I believe he could also become a great CEO.
When looking at the track list there aren’t many misses on this album. Each member had one song that missed where they carried the hook. Takeoff missed on Jane, Quavo missed on Mahomes, and Offset missed on Handle My Business. Other than those three songs this was a strong album. I give it an 84% or 4 stars.
Download: Culture III