Vince Staples sped right through the album promo cycle this week announcing a new project titled FM!, which follows up his 2017 album Big Fish Theory. He announced some new music would come this week and then confirmed it would be an album yesterday, dropping FM! at midnight. The new project Earl Sweatshirt, Kamaiyah, Jay Rock, Kehlani, E-40, Tyga, Ty Dolla $ign, Buddy, and Vonnie. Kenny Beats and Hagler handle the production.
The album is short and succinct, keeping with a trend we are seeing from hip-hop albums in 2018, though not always. The album title follows a major theme woven into the LP, where Vince takes over a fictional radio station that is in part hosted by LA radio hosts Big Boy and Ayydé Vargas. They do things like giveaway Kehlani tickets and give shoutouts.
According to Vince, this isn’t an official album, but rather a project dedicated to "my biggest fan and supporter since day on,” himself. It is similar to the EP Prima Donna, which was released in the lead up to Big Fish Theory.
This album is as West Coast as it gets from Vince. The radio hosts tie it together, but the features all come from the West Coast, primarily from Los Angeles. Bay Area legend E-40 even makes a cameo on “FUN!” and drops an iconic “Tell Me When To Go” ad-lib.
The interludes offer up very small snippets of new music from Tyga and Earl Sweatshirt after a radio shoutout, which makes this feel even more like a radio program and then some dude gets clowned on during the final skit.
Even if the project isn’t an official album, Vince doesn’t phone this in. He is still as witty and poignant as he has always been. He offers dark commentary on fame and money with a sarcastic indifference that has been a part of his act since the beginning.
Stream the full project that is only 22 minutes and with it 70 degrees here in New York, it does always feel like summer, though that probably means the apocalypse is coming soon to be honest. Pick up a copy here.