The Moment I First Respected Future

blame it on Patrick Glynn July 16, 2015

PREAMBLE: I… don’t know what to say about Future. I wasn’t really a fan or purveyor of his music when he was crooning alongside YC in “Racks,” never understood the “Tony Montana” fake accent, and I can’t recite any lyrics to “Move That Dope,” “Turn On The Lights,” or “Chosen One” if my life depended on it. I mean, the whole #FutureHive movement is more hilarious to me than serious. However, I do acknowledge that his string of mixtapes planted him firmly back into the public’s collective consciousness after his failed courtship of Ciara – and underwhelming sophomore album Honest – threatened to derail his career. Therefore, I’m not the one anybody should talk to when it comes to the music of Strugs F. Vocals. However, the DopeHouse’s newest contributor? He’s less cynical than I am towards Futche, so perhaps you should just listen to him ramble on about the guy instead. – Meka

I don’t remember the moment I heard of Future. I don’t remember the moment I realized Future was bigger than I thought he was. I do remember, though, the moment I respected Future.

In a world where it’s hard to get more than a couple singles between studio albums as large as Future, we got three mixtapes. Four months after Honest dropped, Future released Monster, which arrived amidst his split with then fiancé – and mother to his child – Ciara. He followed with Beast Mode and 56 Nights. And despite the rumbling buzz that was spreading I still put off listening to Future. Because Honest. It was underwhelming at best. “Benz Friends” and “Move That Dope” still appear in rotation, but I felt it lacked a certain depth to it. It was mainly radio hits, many of which missed, like “I Won” with Kanye West. I was stupid. I had the thought, “I listened to this one album, and I really didn’t like it, so he lost his one shot with me.”

It was a Saturday at the end of June. I saw a member of the sarcastically formed #FutureHive post a picture of a goat wearing sunglasses looking like its yelling (or crooning, in this case), saying something along the lines of, “Future on the last half of ‘Throw Away.'” I laughed, mainly because anything with goat memes relating people to being the Greatest Of All-Time at something is hilarious — like the Michael Jordan crying face meme.

That’s the day I heard “Throw Away.” This was just over a month ago. Future began the song stunting, saying the women around him are like pistols. They’re worthy of being thrown away and easily replaced by a new one. Half way through, Future breaks down. What he’s saying in the first half of the song is a front to hide the pain he feels about the a sense of a certain woman. He’s sure he’ll be fine without her, yelling, “Mark my words, I’mma ball without you,” eventually admitting he can’t stop think about her when he’s having sex with other women, and he hopes she feels the same when she’s sleeping with other men. Or when she’s not?

“Throw Away” is the more emotional and raw than anything I’ve heard from him before. It’s more honest and raw than anything on the album where he was supposed be just that.

The rest of the mixtape also featured better bangers (“Fuck Up Some Commas,” “Wesley Presley”) than most of what I had heard from Future before. After delivering the raw performance on “Throw Away,” he returned to his party version on “After That” with a solid feature from Lil Wayne (who may or may not be having the best week ever). It’s perfect to get hype to before stepping out for the night, and a perfect way to get over a girl who just broke your heart. Nothing matters. As much as Future cares bout her, he knows deep down, he’s a monster. After her, it’s more women. After them, some alcohol. After that, more women. His feelings get pushed aside to continue living his lavish lifestyle. It may cause him to make decisions that crush him, but he’s aware of what he is. A monster.

I guess I didn’t understand the level of Future’s stardom at the time. Not that he wasn’t big, but WHY he was so big. Most of the time, Future is all cool. He makes some of the better trap music around, and blending it with the emotion (which his friend Drake helped usher a wave of into hip-hop) makes him stand out from the *enter other trap artists he’s better than here.*

I don’t think Future is the best rapper in hip-hop. I don’t think he makes better all-around music and albums than other artists do. But I am going into Dirty Sprite 2 with a different level of respect for Future. Six months ago, hell, even a month ago, I would’ve laughed if you said I’d be excited for Future’s next album. But I am. I’m getting my goat memes ready.