Two titanic rap industry stars finally dropped their highly anticipated duo album, but we’re not talking about Jay-Z and Kanye West’s “Watch The Throne.” Atlanta MCs Gucci Mane and Waka Flocka Flame released their partnered project, “Ferrari Boyz,” and the coupling sees Gucci bring his artistic abilities (those that made songs like “Lemonade” and his mixtape, “The Burrprint,” popular) and Waka contribute his rough and loud flow.
Much like their former projects, the two MCs thematically don’t dive much past their love of blunts and guns. However, the album finds its lane in how the two Atlanta MCs relay these hobbies, using their lyrics as the album’s salient upside. Lines like, “I’m a walking meal ticket/wait a minute/my bank account got commas in it,” translate well to vinyl. The album’s three strongest cuts, “Stoned,” “Suicide Homicide” and “Ferrari Boyz,” adhere to this boisterous ethos. Although “Stoned” is the epitome of what sinks this project, when it stands by itself, it’s a keeper. With lyrics like, “drinkin’, up that patron/ it’s over, I’m loaded, we toasted, we grown,” and references to both The Flintstones and Stone Cold Steve Austin this song is a potential club buster.
“Suicide Homicide”--featuring Wooh da Kid--showcases Gucci and Waka rhyming at their bests, including a fantastic chorus, hook and verses. And the album’s eponymous track, “Ferrari Boyz,” combines Gucci’s silky flow and Waka’s signature headbanging boasts well. Gucci’s starting verse and chorus sets the tone as a smooth-yet-hard song before Waka rattles off his thumping bars with “Lane changin’, chain swingin’.”
However, these better moments are often over-shadowed by their lamer counterparts. The cringe-worthy cut “15th and the 1st” utilizes background tones that sound like Flocka and Gucci robbed the Ocarina Of Time’s music producers and slapped their product on “Ferrari Boyz.” Other underwhelming tracks include “Mud Musik,” which includes nothing more than a regurgitation of lyrics from prior tracks such as “Hard In Da Paint.”
The downside to this popular Southern pairing is the project’s undeniable homogeneity. The album’s thumping sameness (provided by producers such as Southside and Drumma Boy) makes it tough to distinguish sick lines from lines that make the listener sick. It was a huge stride in the rap industry when artists veered away from overusing the hi-hat cymbal in their music, but the Brick Squad definitely went in the other direction. Every song on this album contains a constant playing of the hi-hat over an abysmal choice of melody.
What makes music enticing is the amount of variety that can be contained within it--it’s a necessity no matter the genre. However, 1017 Brick Squad specifically made this album for one audience. Pinning it to one community of Hip-Hop listeners makes it difficult for the album to be widely accepted.
The Brick Squad pairing--although audacious--just doesn’t work. In a year when high-profile rapping duos are the new rage, Gucci and Waka’s “Ferrari Boyz” seems ill-fated to end up as one of the more forgettable partnerships. Their shallow outing doesn’t cut it, especially in comparison to Jay and ‘Ye’s eclectic “Watch The Throne.” Where Gucci and Waka’s solo efforts keep them from total calamity, their pairing creates a disastrous result.