'Limbo' is the much anticipated third studio album release from Portland artist; Aminé. Continuing on from 2017’s smash hit Good For You and 2018’s ONEPOINTFIVE, the 26-year-old rapper has set the bar high. But does 'Limbo' surpass expectations or is it more comfortable dawdling on middle ground?
It has been four years since Aminé took the US album charts by storm with his debut single ‘Caroline’, a song he says was written with the hopeful intention of becoming a modern-day Billie Jean. Indeed, Aminé’s playlist favourites are obvious on this release; from emulating Drake on Riri, to the autobiographical ‘Mama’, (with intentionally drawn influence from Tupac’s ‘Dear Mama’), to the ODB sampling ‘Shimmy’- including a nod to the late Wu-Tang artist’s Return to the '36 Chambers' cover art, cheekily replacing the food coupon ID with a library card.
Aminé also brings along some of his peers for the ride. Utilizing the guest vocals of Young Thug, Injury Reserve and Summer Walker amongst others. But it is the slowthai and Vince Staples feature on ‘Pressure In My Palms’ that stands out amongst the 13 tracks. The three lyricists work well together over the thick bassline until the track takes a different musical direction around the 2.14 mark.
'Limbo' is not a bad album, but it’s not great either. The production is fantastic but there’s nothing that sets it apart lyrically from other generic rap releases. With its sickly-sweet approach to hip-hop, the album feels marketed towards the TikTok generation, rather than the connoiseur and long-time listener. There is nothing of specific note or substance during the run-time and it felt like we had heard it all done before, but better. We expected more from Aminé, especially after the emotive vocal delivery of previous releases.
'Limbo' is certainly not a representation of his best work, but rather an example of a talented artist not pushing his boundaries.
Words: Mike Milenko
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