Thanks to culture, infrastructure, and opportunity, Atlanta has been churning out unique, talented, and hardworking rap stars for decades now. It’s a lineage that includes the likes of Outkast, T.I., Ludacris, Gucci Mane, Jeezy, Migos, Killer Mike and more, giving ATL as rich a history as any city on the map, with a wide-ranging cast of rap giants. Never before has the hierarchy of the city’s current crop of superstars been as well-defined and understood: Future is undoubtedly the biggest artist in Atlanta’s right now and Young Thug is by far the most intriguing, so the two of them together on a joint album, at last, is a coup, to say the least.
For years these two acts have existed separately as singular entities cutting their teeth and gradually building up their respective claims as the king of Atlanta and the rap world as a whole. For Future, commercial success is now commonplace as he constantly bumps shoulders and shares airwaves with pop stars and has forged his own lane beside the Drakes and Kanye Wests of the world. For Thug, that commercial success still eludes him, but he’s been lauded critically and attains success by other means as his label figures out how to trigger his leap from national curiosity to superstar.
What Thug and Future offer as a collective is an intriguing mix; they’ve slowly burrowed their way into separate sonic spaces since their first collaboration three years ago, on the blaring, Metro Boomin-produced “Chanel Vintage.” Thanks to their mastery of melody and willingness to experiment, both have landed in zones where they’ll sing and warble more than rap, each offering albums that are more R&B than anything else this year. But almost none of that is found on Super Slimey, where Future and Thugger both chose to step on the gas and pump energy into their tracks instead.
To do so, they dip into their stash of the finest production Atlanta has to offer, and oddly enough, Metro isn’t one of the producers listed amongst the 13-track album’s liner notes. Instead, they lean on the likes of Southside, London On Da Track, Mike Will Made-It, TM88, and more for the album’s energetic sound. The rare occasion when the duo does take a second to breathe and unfurl their melodic deliveries is on “200,” it’s thanks to Thug’s go-to producer Wheezy and the 808 Mafia’s Tre Pounds. The track is the album’s calmest moment, and easiest listen, and an indictment of Super Slimey as a whole.
Like Kanye West and Jay-Z’s Watch The Throne or Future and Drake’s What A Time To Be Alive, Super Slimey exists as two entities standing besides each other, with one overwhelming the energy of the moment. Slimey is very much a Future album, with a dozen guest appearances from Young Thug. It feels like Thug has entered Future’s world, landed on production tailor-made for Future, and found a comfortable space to exist there.