Thursday, January 7, 2016

Song of the Day #252 - Travis Scott - 3500 (ft. Future and 2 Chainz)

Sundays in the city moving slow!

This has been stuck in my head on some level for about half a year so I figure it ought to finally be song of the day. You know the thing where you get really hyped up for something and you start shouting rap lyrics? ...No? You don't know that thing? You think that it really isn't much of a "thing"? Probably just something I do? Oh. Okay. WELL, anyways, for me, for the last few months, the odds were pretty good that the words that came to mind in those circumstances was "BODIES IN THE CITY MOVING SLOW", which is, uh, not even the correct lyrics. I think the lyrics I had always misheard are COOLER, though, like this whole idea of the whole city moving slow, sorta like uhhh in The Wasteland, when he says "I had not thought death had undone so many." regarding the crowds he sees on the bridge, except instead of getting all bummed out about it you just relish your superiority or something.

That's what the whole song's about, of course: bragging. The title refers to "3500 for a coat", the amount Kim and Kanye apparently paid for a little fur coat for Nori, one that she'll undoubtedly outgrow in probably mere months. Travis's perspective isn't judgmental, but operates from a place of assumed judgment, and defiance of it, that is to say... if you think 3500 is excessive for a coat, you don't know anything yet. To this end he enlists Future and 2 Chainz to break down the trillness of their lifestyles in no uncertain terms. All seems pretty standard, right?

Okay but the song is SEVEN MINUTES AND FORTY TWO SECONDS LONG. That's a number practically unheard of in the genre, more befitting like, post rock or Joanna Newsom, or at least KOOL A.D. or something... This is when you start to remember that Travis Scott is completely insane, and is one of those artists actively trying to do something better than anyone else has, like, actively trying to outclass the classics of the genre. The beat is sick, with that signature cloud-aggressiveness of Travis's production, and filled with tons of flourishes on every progression and almost every line that, well beyond the sum of their parts, imparts the song with a sort of "next level"ness that can't really be described.

And the lines themselves are amazing... everyone is just bringing their a-game, wholeheartedly embracing every joke and parody of themselves so they can bring to bear the ultimate versions of their personality. What I mean by this is that Travis says "Got a young 'Yonce with a Iggy on her", which is maybe the most needlessly shitdisturbing way to refer to a girl with a big butt, Future says "I pray to God he bring me Actavis", and really sounds like he's praying, and 2 Chainz shouts "Crib bigger than your imagination" in a way that I assure you is bigger than your imagination. The elaborate intro, the long hooks, and the extended outro all feel necessary in their excess to really capture what's going on here. This is like... the sound of trap folding in on itself. The trapularity. It is glorious.

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