From “Trap Queen” to “My Way” to “679,” 2015 has been great to Willie Maxwell, who is better known as Fetty Wap to his fans. After having produced a string of top 10 hit singles, the one-eyed New Jersey native just released his self-titled debut album last week. As with all debuts, Fetty Wap could be a good way of indicating whether the rapper really stands out as an artist and whether he is musically capable of maintaining his success in the long run.
While there is nothing particularly unique or moving about this album, it is a great disc to play to get the party started. Much of the album features similar, recycled melodies as well as Fetty opening his songs with “Yeeaaah” or “seventeen thirty-eight.” One cannot help but notice the recurrence of Monty, a rapper who is featured in seven songs (nine if you listen to the deluxe version) of the album.
Though generic, the theme of Fetty Wap’s album seems to be in line with that of many other artists. Indeed, all throughout Fetty Wap, we hear the rapper attempting to recuperate a lost love or trying to grab her attention.
On “Again,” for example, Fetty is direct and wastes no time in opening the track with the hook: “I want you to be mine again baby/ I cannot see myself without you/ I go out of my way to please you.” This song also makes an allusion to Fetty’s most famous single “Trap Queen” and even incorporates some of its lyrics.
Fetty gets more serious in “Rewind,” a slow-jam about having to cope with the pain of seeing one’s ex with a new lover. The track, of course, features Monty, but its lyrics really tap into one’s post-breakup state of mind.
Sounding like the kind of song an infatuated schoolboy would feature in a mixtape to his crush, the slow and steady “D.A.M.” is pretty straightforward in that it is apparently about a girl who is “so damn fine,” a verse that Fetty repeats until the song’s end.
Meanwhile, veering off the theme of love, the track “I’m Straight” sounds more like the typical rap song in which Fetty does nothing but throw flowers at himself by mentioning his money, his cars and his sneakers, to which the best verse in this song alludes; “You should see my sneakers shine, they like ‘damn baby.’”
With his chain of consecutive hit singles and his winning the VMA for Artist to Watch, this past summer could have easily been considered the summer of Fetty Wap. For those reasons alone, it was not surprising to find fans and critics highly anticipant of the release of Fetty’s debut album. 20 tracks later ,listeners find themselves neither awed nor disappointed by the simple, catchy tunes spouted by the New Jersey rapper.
Though his music may not be considered as innovative or lyrically intricate as Kanye West’s or Kendrick Lamar’s, it wouldn’t be right to wholly denounce Fetty Wap as untalented or generic.
Fetty Wap has had his moment, but only time and hard work can tell whether he can expand that moment into an epoch. Indeed, the rapper has potential in that he has a very strange voice that almost resembles that of an inebriated man, but it works well for him and gives his music a very jovial and worry-free appeal.
In view of the fact that his debut album dropped last Friday, Fetty is still a relatively new player to the rap world and still has a chance to prove that he is capable of making much more than just feel good music.