Arising on the Hip-Hop/Trap scene alongside his past mentor, Gucci Mane, Waka Flocka Flame was an artist that set trends for future Trap sounds. Not only in regards to vocal energy and providing unlyrical but still very turnt-up bars, but also due to the producers of the album; Lex Luger, Southside and Drumma Boy.
Since the albums release in 2010, Flocka’s continuing fame for sold out concerts and sometimes dropping those wild-ratchet-get-fucked-up projects. However, for a Flocka fan and looking into how the ATL scene has inspired and flooded the modern Hip-Hop sound, Waka Flocka’s ‘Flockaveli’ is an important project for that conversation.
From the very beginning with ridiculous ad-libs, roars, impersonations of gunshots, tense vocals and vicious production from Lex and Southside on “Bustin’ At Em”, the overall sound, instrumentally, and themes spoken on the album were imminent. Throughout the album, there’s monstrous production and heavy-references to trapping (no way!), gang-activities, robberies and calling out the fake ones in the industry as well as the “Snakes in the Grass”. Highlights on the album isn’t just the infectious “Hard In Da Paint”, but also the melodic yet still Trap-esque “No Hands”.
However, one of the tracks on this album that highlights the aggression and ‘no fucks’ that embody Waka. “Karma” is that track as creepy choir vocals, gun-cocking samples, dreamy synths and hard-hitting snares allow Flocka, YG Hootie and Popa Smurf spit turnt-up, highly energetic performances. Other highlights are the Lil Jon produced “Smoke, Drank”, Lex’s “Grove St. Party” and “Fuck the Club Up”.
In total, ‘Flockaveli’ is a heavy album to get into. Not only for the abrasive vocal style Flocka performs with, but also for commercialising and bringing Trap music to the front of the Hip-Hop genre. While there was already T.I., Gucci Mane, Jeezy and Yo Gotti producing this sub-genre of Hip-Hop, Waka Flocka was able to push and promote it in a way that would put the ATL scene back on the map.