While 21-year old rapper-singer Post Malone shows potential on his debut album ‘Stoney’, he has plenty of room to improve in the future.
Each and every year, there is are a couple of new rappers who seems to have the potential to break through. Among those in 2016 is 21-year old rapper-singer, Post Malone. Malone introduced himself to the world with “White Iverson” in 2015, showing his potential. The record, reprised here on his debut Stoney showed that there was something there. The same can be said of Stoney, a flawed debut with its moments.
“Déjà vu” & “No Option”
Having the star power of Justin Bieber on “Déjà vu” is a lift…sort of. “Déjà vu” isn’t a masterwork, but contextually it is well-rounded and enjoyable. Here, the chill, laid-back sound works. “No Option” stands out. Once again, the record is slickly produced, enjoyably trailing “Déjà vu.” Vocally, Malone sounds on-point, particularly the catchy hook and variable bridge. “Cold,” likewise, benefits from its production, but isn’t particularly distinct from other records in the same vein. It highlights the constant problem with Stoney – undercooked material.
Breakthrough hit “White Iverson” redirects lost momentum. There is one consideration though – the listener has to be a fan of the record to begin with. The lyrics are ridiculous, but basketball enthusiasts should appreciate the references to the sport minimally. The hook is a selling point for sure:
“Saucin’, saucin’, I’m saucin’ on you / I’m swaggin’, I’m swaggin’, I’m swaggin’ oh ooh / I’m ballin’, I’m ballin’, Iverson on you…”
“Patient” is more confident, drenched in swagger. Malone doesn’t aim high, but he clearly states his point of view. Like “White Iverson,” “Patient” is the ultimate flex-fest, summed up soundly on the hook.
“I know my wrist be dancin’ crazy / been on some fly shit lately / used to be so damn patient / but now it’s f*ck you, pay me…”
“Congratulations” sounds faded from the start. Once again, production is a selling point. Post Malone handles the lush, slow, and sung hook:
“My mama called, seen you on TV / said some shit done changed / ever since we was on / I dreamed it all / ever since I was young / they said I wouldn’t be nothing / now they always say congratulations…”
Quavo pop raps his verse initially, before changing to straight rap. This contrasts the performance by Malone. The track successfully depicts his come-up. All in all, it’s a respectable, but by no means the second coming.
Interestingly, one of the better tracks – “Leave” is only available on the deluxe edition, along with “Hit this Hard,” “Money Made Me Do It” (featuring 2 Chainz), and “Feeling Whitney.”
Ultimately, Stoney is a flawed debut album from Post Malone. It has moments that satisfy without a doubt, but more often than not, there’s a lack of distinct, artistry. Essentially, Malone seems to be going through the motions, but does nothing to assert himself as the next urban superstar. There’s enough to give him another look in the future, but he must step up his game.
Gems: “Déjà vu,” “No Option,” “White Iverson,” “Patient,” “Congratulations” & “Leave” (Deluxe only)
Post Malone • Stoney • Republic • Release: 12.9.16
Photo Credit: Republic
A full track-by-track review of the album can be found at The Musical Hype.