Last Week’s Albums: Suicide Squad Soundtrack, 2 Chainz & DJ Snake

Suicide Squad Soundtrack  – Various Artists 

While the reviews have been poor for the latest DC adaption, the soundtrack to Suicide Squad has a few more positives. Featuring an eclectic list of artists, the compilation of songs covers everything from hip-hop to pop to electronica and old time rock and roll.

The majority of songs are new, with Grimes’ industrial themed Medieval Warfare, Kevin Gates’ rap meets club banger Know Better, and the smooth R&B of Kehlani’s Gangster the clear highlights, but for me, it’s the Action Bronson, Dan Auerbach and Mark Ronson collaboration, Standing In The Rain, that stands head and shoulders above anything else on the album. Ronson crafts a retro-styled beat that harks back to his Version days, with Bronson dropping lyrical bombs about using and dressing like a playboy, and Auerbach providing the haunting hook that interlopes lyrics from Oran “Juice” Jones’ 80s classic The Rain.

As is the case with most soundtracks these days, a couple of older, well-known tracks get a look in. Eminem’s massive 2002 hit Without Me, War’s Slippin’ Into Darkness and the Creedence Clearwater Revival classic Fortunate Son all feature, while Panic At The Disco’s rendition of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody is sacrilegious. It must be said Skrillex and Rick Ross’ Purple Lamborghini and the Lil Wayne, Wiz Khalifa, Logic, Ty Dolla $ign and Imagine Dragons collaboration, Sucker For Pain, are both songs the soundtrack could go without.

Verdict: A few missteps but on the whole, a satisfying soundtrack that supersedes the film.

2 Chainz – Daniel Son; Necklace Don

2 Chainz is on somewhat of roll this year. His January mixtape, Felt Like Cappin (read our review here), and Lil Wayne collaborative album, ColleGrove (read our review here), both garnered a positive reception from fans and critics alike, and with anticipation growing for the release of his third solo record, 2 Chainz has come through with surprise mixtape Daniel Son; Necklace Don.

Consisting of 10 tracks with production from the likes of TM88, K Swisha, DJ Spinz, Dun Deal and C4, Daniel Son; Necklace Don is a typical 2 Chainz release, with hard hitting trap beats providing the base for the rapper’s identifiable flow and often hilarious rhymes. 2 Chainz goes in over flute sampling Kilo, reminds us he’s a “blessing” on the track of the same name, and imparts a message of positivity on Ghetto. The tape features only two guests, with YFN Lucci You adding a hook and a verse on In Love Wit Her, and Drake joining 2 Chainz on the ego trip, piano laced Big Amount.

Verdict: Daniel Son; Necklace Don is the perfect stop gap until 2 Chainz drops his next long player.

DJ Snake – Encore

French electronic producer and rapper DJ Snake is best known for Turn Down For What, his huge collaboration with Lil Jon that went global at the end of 2013. Since then he’s released a number of hit singles and continued work on his debut album, Encore, which was finally released last week.

Even if you’ve only ever heard Turn Down For What, you know what to expect with this album. Over the course of 14 tracks Snake delivers an album of modern EDM bangers with flourishes of hip-hop, shaped by a long list of guest producers, singers and rappers. Skrillex lends a hand for the production of Sahara, resulting in a standard Skrillex thumper, Moksi helps out with another rave number on the pumping Pigalle, while Aussie George Maple provides an alluring hook on the Diplo-esque Talk. UK singer Bipolar Sunshine contributes vocals on the pleasant Middle and bass heavy Future Pt 2, with Justin Bieber’s sweet pop vocals on the rumoured Selena Gomez ode, Let Me Love You, giving the album pop credentials.

While the majority of Encore is fuelled by EDM, there are a number of rapper’s involved and, as a big hip-hop fan, these moments are the album’s best in my humble opinion. While the Swizz Beatz cameo isn’t necessary, both Jeremih and Young Thug make their presence felt on the commercial The Half and Travi$ Scott, Migos and G4SHI join with Snake for the trap anthem Oh Me Oh My.

Verdict: A little too EDM-oriented for my tastes, but worth a listen.

Image: Empireonline