chance

After nearly five months of vague details, zero cover art and a Twitter campaign, Chance the Rapper’s debut album, "The Big Day," is finally here.

Fresh off one of the most important few years of his life, Chance reflects on how the winds of change have affected him and his family. After the critical success of his 2016 offering, “Coloring Book,” he rose from underground superstar to white-hot supernova. Since then, many fans have been clamoring that his new surprisingly clean bars and “bouncy house” beats are signs that Chance has changed up his style.

With many Chicago natives saying that “Chance has gone Hollywood” and that his music will never return to the raw, elite bars that he displayed on older projects such as the “10 day” mixtape and the cult classic “Acid Rap.”

As for the album, fittingly entitled “The Big Day,” it is a celebration for his new circumstances in life surrounding his marriage to his long-time fiancée Kirsten Corley. The two also have a three-year-old daughter named Kensli.

Most of the album revolves around his wedding and his undying love for his family, but on a handful songs he does revert back to the old Chance and mixes it up. He also has a few skits in the album, most of which were recorded at his wedding. A few of them are a little funny. In typical Chance fashion he also employ a sort of “trap-gospel” sound throughout the project which can get a little exhausting at times.

Chance elected to remove the features from the initial track listing  a trend that has taken hold in the rap community recently. While it takes some digging, the features were uncovered to reveal a diverse set of acts such as Nicki Minaj, Lil Durk, Justin Vernon, John Legend, Gucci Mane, Timbaland, Randy Newman, Shawn Mendes, Megan Thee Stallion and more.

Must Listens:

“Hot Shower” – featuring DaBaby & MadeinTYO

“Hot Shower” sounds more like Chance’s newer style, but the steady pace of the trap beat on this one makes it easier to hear his verse. Chance’s verse consists of him talking about a hot shower and cooking with grease in a very free-flowing freestyle form. MadeinTYO’s verse is just him telling us of his lavish lifestyle and how hot his own showers are. He also raps in a freestyle format. DaBaby’s verse begins with him addressing one of his many lawsuits that he has accumulated over the years. His verse sounds more put together and his usually fast-paced style pairs beautifully with the beat.

 “Handsome” – featuring Megan Thee Stallion

Ladies, if you feel an album centered on marriage interferes with your “Hot Girl Summer” values never fear, the original Hot Girl makes an appearance on this album. Megan Thee Stallion provides one of  if not the hottest feature — on the album.

Megan Thee Stallion provides her signature erotic bars mixed with her hardened, down-South accent with just a dash of melodic singing towards the end. She gives great advice to her own significant other on how to handle her or they will suffer the consequences. Megan does all this while gassing herself in typical “Hot Girl” fashion. The “Admiral of A**” does her thing with this verse just as she does with all others. Chance goes on about his looks while also gassing up his wife’s looks along with her excellent skills as a mother and a wife.

“Handsome” is spit over a classic Chicago beat with a summertime vibe and  hook taken over by Chance himself. A great song that is sure to be a radio hit.

“Do You Remember” – featuring Benjamin Gibbard

“Do You Remember” is a walk down memory lane with Chance as he reflects on his youth in Chicago, focusing mainly on the summers. He shouts out a few landmarks only Chicagoans would know including a barb about the city loving him so much that they let him “cut the line on the Dan Ryan.” A line any Chicagoan would hear with speculation because the Dan Ryan Expressway is always backed up.

He also gives a shout out to the 2017 World Series championship-winning Chicago Cubs, a strange move considering Chance is a notorious White Sox fan. He also expresses a great level of optimism heading into the year 2020 while reflecting on how far he’s come.

This song also utilizes the verbal talents of Benjamin Gibbard, who takes full control of a gorgeous chorus that is sure to produce a warm and nostalgic feeling in the listener. He also makes a reference to the notorious “27 Club,” a “club” of celebrities and musicians who have died at the age of 27. This song sounds a lot like old Chance, reminiscent of the critically acclaimed “10 day” mixtape.

Verdict:

8.5/10

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