On November 24th YG’s highly anticipated mixtape Red Friday was leaked a day early. Much to his frustration he blamed his label Def Jam for the occurrence (read more here).
Red Friday is an 8-track project that arrives as YG’s second release of the year following his sophomore album Still Brazy in June. It also marks his first mixtape release since Just Re’d Up 2 in 2013. It’s been a ‘krazy’ year and a half for YG after getting shot in June 2015, playing his part in creating a serious Anti Trump Campaign, releasing Still Brazy and featuring on 3 tracks on DJ Mustard’s latest album Cold Summer. For him to release another project this year really shows YG’s drive to keep his name hot on the streets.
Red Friday really illustrates what YG is all about. “I’m A Thug Pt. 2” starts with bumping 808’s and signature west coast synthesisers that immediately sets the tone for the mixtape while throughout he describes countless reasons why he’s a thug. Continuing the high energy, “Get Out Yo Feelings” is straight fire, it’s produced by DJ Mustard and the beat is infectious. The chanted chorus demands haters to get out their feelings which is a common theme throughout the mixtape. The track also features 4Hunnid Records signee RJ who contributes decent bars and a playful vibe.
The production takes a twisted turn on “I Know“. The distant piano rift slows the track down, combined with a melodic flow by Mitch that really switches up the direction of the mixtape. However, YG spits some memorable lines like “I did it without Dre, I did it without Jay, I did it without Ye, What the fuck could y’all say?”. The next track “I Be On” features Atlanta’s 21 Savage who has made real noise in the scene this year. He spits bars on this track and shows he can hold his own on west coast beats too.
Stand out tracks: “I’m A Thug Pt. 2“, “I Been On” (ft 21 Savage), “Get Out Yo Feelings” (ft Mitch) and “One Time Comin”.
Red Friday achieves the aim of painting Black Friday RED. YG gives his supporters what they know and love from him. He uses the ever so familiar content of hoes, money and most importantly gang banging, infusing his honesty and portraying his ‘thug life’. It does seem like these songs are left overs from Still Brazy but nevertheless it’s good to see YG reverting back to his roots after dabbling in a number of political infused tracks like “FDT” in his previous release. However, “One Time Comin” offers listeners a taste of YG as a voice of the people addressing the social injustices happening in America right now. This is in some ways what made Still Brazy such a success for YG due to these social commentary songs.
Ultimately, Red Friday is a solid project from YG. It is lyrically and musically sound with a few street anthems which adds weight to his already active year music wise. The mixtape will give fans a fix until he releases Just Re’d Up 3 next year which was announced on the first track “Public Service Announcement“.
Listen to YG’s new mixtape Red Friday below.