Album Review: Limbo by Aminé

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Adam Aminé Daniel, or just known as Aminé, is a singer, rapper, and songwriter from Portland, Oregon. Ever since the popular track Caroline was released, he has been able to use that popularity to grow as an artist. While Aminé did drop a mixtape in 2018 titled OnePointFive, Limbo comes nearly three years after his debut studio album.

The first track from the album is Burden. While it does start with a short little skit about picking up a friend from jail, when the beat comes in, you know it’s going to be amazing. It seems to have a vocal sample, as well as some slick guitar part. I can definitely see that Aminé has grown a lot since his debut studio album since his rapping is smooth and his flow is down. He also seems to make a reference to the murder of George Floyd in the beginning of verse 2.

Besides the short interlude after, Woodlawn is one of the shorter tracks on the album, just a little under two and a half minutes in length. Beat wise, it definitely changed up a lot with more of a trap styled beat with the drums and flute sample. He also seems to be using a rap flow that is similar to his earlier work. I’m not really sure how I feel about this track since it was a complete switch up from the previous track, especially since the opener was amazing. On this track, Aminé talks about a neighborhood he grew up in Portland, Woodland Park.

Kobe is a short interlude track on the album and has a speaking part from Jak Knight. Just like the title infers, Jak talks about how the death of Kobe Bryant affected him. Just like a lot of other people, especially in the United States, the death of Kobe shocked many people. He talks about how his death made him mature quickly, assuming that it made him realize how short life can really be. He also talks about trying to figure out his finances.

Roots opens up with another, smooth sample-heavy track. On this track, it definitely seems like Aminé is trying to copy Drake. A lot of people are surprised by some of the features since it has JID, Charlie Wilson, as well as a few others. Also, the soul from the chorus just fits so well with the smooth beat. While the chorus talks a lot about the flaws and guilt of yourself, the outro talks about growing (like a plant) from your mistakes.

Can’t Decide starts off with a quick guitar part, and features more of Aminé’s singing and R&B style. With the smooth R&B singing comes more of the relationship type tracks. On this track, he’s definitely talking about a relationship. While he is talking about the more ‘fun’ side of a relationship, there are definitely some issues he has talked about on this track. The two of them fight, but the way of solving things is a bit unhealthy.

Compensating was one of the latest promotional singles for the album and also features Young Thug. This also features the R&B side of Aminé during the chorus of the track. During the course of the track, they talk about how they have messed up in their relationship and that it is hard for them to admit that they were wrong. I’m not sure if I ever voiced my opinion on Young Thug on the blog, but he honestly ruins this track with his rapping. It doesn’t mix well with Aminé whatsoever.

The track I was most excited about on the album was definitely Shimmy. It’s a bit disappointing that this is the shortest track on the album. This track shows a lot of similarities and shares some lines with Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s track, Shimmy Shimmy Ya. If you’re a fan of ODB, you will definitely appreciate the references. This track is basically Aminé bragging about several different things, but he definitely seems to flex his money.

Pressure In My Palms features a quiet bass line with trap style drums. The track opens with the name of the track being repeated. We also get a few lines from slowthai and Vince Staples. Not a huge fan of slowthai on the track, but I feel like this was previously a Vince Staples track since his verse is almost flawless. About halfway through, the beat definitely changes up a bit and becomes more light and playful in nature. He also pays homage to Kanye West’s track We Major, so I have to give him props to that one.

Riri is another track that incorporates the twangy guitar beats, as well as a booming bass. This was a promotional single that really made me look forward to this album. I can’t think of the track at the moment, but it does seem similar to someone else’s track. On this track, Aminé talks about how this girl broke his heart three different times. He mentions that she wasn’t with him when he drove a cheaper car so the girl isn’t worth his time.

Easy is another bright and playful track with the guitar line. There is a lot of jazz influence mixed into this track. This is a duet between Aminé and Summer Walker. They actually mix really well and I dig how his voice is a little more raw on this track. His falsetto voice almost sounds like Childish Gambino at times. This has a similar message to some previous tracks talking about how love isn’t easy and you can’t just solve problems with a snap of a finger.

Mama could be a reference to a Kanye West track, Hey Mama. It opens up with some piano features and talking about his mother. On the first verse, he reminisces about the old memories he made with his mother and how she helped him through a lot. The second verse seems to talk about life after he moved out. He also seems to reference Kanye West by using the “Go back to college” line. After the second verse, he ends the track with the chorus and repeating the word, “mama.”

Becky seems to feature some jazz sample, with some reverbed effects. It’s definitely a complete switch in direction compared to the previous track, especially with the message that is being portrayed on the track. This track definitely gets into some racial issues, especially since his parents don’t want him with this white girl and her parents don’t want her to be with him. The chorus also talks about how society has viewed these relationships in a negative light in the past.

Fetus definitely feels like it has some Injury Reserve elements thrown in there. There’s a light, mid pitched beat, but also some scratched and reversed sound effects thrown in. The track does feel a bit different since it does feature the late Steppa J. Groggs from Injury Reserve. On this track, they seem to talk about the possibility of this girl having a baby, but she’s not so sure if she wants to have a child. He also talks about what kind of person he would be if he brought a child into the world.

The final track from the album is My Reality. The track opens up with Joyce Wrice talking about how Aminé was able to turn his dream, or fantasy, into his reality. He also talks about how some people he looked up to are facing some of the same problems he is realizing now. Besides realizing some of the problems people are facing now, he also uses his track to flex on some of the things he is able to afford now.

I am definitely impressed at how much Aminé grew up since his first album. While there are several playful tracks on here, there are tracks where you can see that he has shown so much growth and maturity. We will see if he continues to ride out the success to improve his craft in the near future.
Overall Rating: 7/10
Favorite Tracks: Burden, Roots, Shimmy, Pressure In My Palms, Riri, Becky

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