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Waka Flocka Flame, Triple F Life: Friends, Fans & Family

Waka Flocka Flame’s sophomore set sounds nothing like its explosive predecessor, Flockaveli. An album that christened the hulking MC as ATL’s newest larger-than-life rap star, Flockaveli welcomed back the decimating aggression that went AWOL following the peak of gangsta rap enthusiasts Ruff Ryders (DMX! The Lox!) G-Unit, Dipset—and produced Waka’s biggest crossover hit to date, “No Hands.” The question now is, where does that leave Triple F Life: Friends, Fans & Family, Waka’s second studio album?

Dedicated to the three important F‘s in his life: friends, fans and family—and those who doesn’t fit any of the three get a big ‘F—You’ according to a recent tweet from his @WakaFlockaBSM account—Waka’s second effort displays exactly what a sophomore album is supposed to: growth.

As presented on his single choices, like the booming eff-your-nightclub’s-couch anthem “I Don’t Really Care” and mesmerizing (though now dated) strip club favorite “Round Of Applause,” Waka takes a step beyond the grim, goon rap of Flockaveli (“Hard In Da Paint,” “TTG”)—which still bangs—to create a project that sounds more polished than its former. Though new-sounding tunes like the breezy-and-poppy “Get Low” and “Fist Pump” may not sit well with longtime fans, but they do, however, showcase the rapper’s attempt at filling in as a more well-rounded artist. Besides, these tracks offer the potential for him to scoop up a new audience.

Aside from lackluster joints like the lazy “Clap” and arid “Flex,” Triple F Life stands as Waka’s most personal project to date. While his chaotic energy remains unmarred on tracks like the brooding Meek Mill-assisted “Let Them Guns Blam,” and rowdy “Cash,” the album’s true highlights are when the dreaded rapper gets vividly three-dimensional and lays it all on wax. “I’m mentally home alone, so I’m kicking down doors,” he decrees on the album’s opener. Now, this doesn’t mean one bit that the 6’5″ rapper gets mushy over soul samples, because there’s still those block-rocking beat-people-up-music (“U Aint About That Life,” “Lurkin’”), but when he asks his adversaries, “Where y’all was when we was eating dollar menus/So close to a homeless man picking trash,” it’s clear that he’s in a different zone now than he has been in the past.

The contemplative credence displayed on “Power of My Pen” and “Triple F Life Outro” are hands down Triple F’s beaming highlights, as Waka flicks the switch off his livewire ways and lets Joaquin Malphurs enter to wear his heart on his sleeves. “December 16th, a part of me died/Part of me stayed strong but a part of me cried,” he avows on over a sinking guitar line that anchors the album’s somber closer—a tribute to his fallen BSM soldier Mario “Slim Dunkin” Hamilton. “Pardon me on the song while I’m spilling my pain/A part of me getting weak when they mention your name/It go R.I.P. Slim D.”

Some will say Triple F Life finds Waka trying to do much, reaching too far out of his zone. But the rapper coolly exceeds expectations in his artistic self-awareness and this go-round shines like his diamond-studded Fozzy Bear chain. “I earned my spot,” he boasts on “Power of My Pen.” Indeed, he has. —Ralph Bristout (@XXLRalph)

  • alderman j

    NIGGAS CANT HATE ON WAKA NO MORE, ALL YALL CAN DO IS QUIETLY BECOME FANS!!!! SOUTHSHIT!!!! FLLEEEEXXXXX!!!!GO PICK IT UP GET YO FAVORITE VICE/ AND LISTEN TO IT TWICE/THEN TELL ME WAKA AINT NICE!!!!!

  • randy

    This got a xxl but stoned immaculate got a L? XXL i lose faith in you every next review you have seriously wtf

  • mr.reg

    a xl really this album is thebiggest piece of shit since nikki minaj’s album xxl is going to shit

  • GWrath

    Nas is going to drop “Life is Good” in a month and i guarantee he’ll get and XL rating as well. I’m calling it. Nas’ 10th album will be equivalent to Waka Flaka Flames 2nd album. Waka is in no way on the same talent level as Nas. Think about you’re ratings XXL. A pioneers work versus that of a party boy rapper that admits he’s a terrible rapper.

    • Frank

      Well when you have a 5 point rating system it’s kind of difficult. If anything I’d just tell them to get a new review system out of like 10

    • SDK

      YEAH
      NAS ALBUM WILL RECEIVE A XL
      LMFAO
      SAME AS WFF….HOLY SHIT

    • Patrick

      I agree with Frank. It’s not as if XXL does XL.5′s or L.75′s, so, technically, the editors will love the NaS album a hell of a lot more than Waka’s, but will get the same rating. And the rating system doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, so it helps to just try and get used to it.

  • nice

    man thoroughly deserved i bump this all the time for his style of music this is on point

  • spaceghost

    Man tracks 6 and 7 should have be replaced with “Chin up” and “Everything I Love” from the Deluxe version then the album would deserve a good L but XL is pushing it especially since 2 of the better songs are on the deluxe version and this was a review of the normal im quite sure

  • swype-matic

    There’s no way originality should be an XL. I don’t even know how you’d come up with that.

  • Batman

    you people are so simple minded… i do not like Waka Flocka AT ALL, but that doesnt mean he cant get an XL? there are different types of music.. this is trap music people not lyrically gifted music. just cause two albums got the same review does not mean they can be compared together?? you people are stupid really, and cant even say im biased when i dont even like Waka.

  • Lil’Jaune

    Bon album, dommage que 75% des track etait sur ses mixtape il n’avait pas trop de surprise la dedans.
    Note personnel 7,5/10 quelque track gacher par les gars de YMCA (Drake et Compagnies Saloperies)
    Good album, too bad 75% of the track was on his mixtape he did not much surprise in there.
    Personal Note 7.5 / 10 spoil any track by the guys at YMCA (Drake and Companies crap)

  • NO WAY

    Nas is going to drop “Life is Good” in a month and i guarantee he’ll get and XL rating as well. I’m calling it. Nas’ 10th album will be equivalent to Waka Flaka Flames 2nd album. Waka is in no way on the same talent level as Nas. Think about you’re ratings XXL. A pioneers work versus that of a party boy rapper that admits he’s a terrible rapper.

    agree
    this shit is terrible are these xxl staff a bunch of teenagers

  • Ninja Boi

    Sooo….Waka beat Fif’s mixtape in terms of rating?…ok then XXL

  • Stay Frosty

    The rating and the actual review don’t even mix. It sounds like you gave it an L, this album wasn’t great and I enjoy Waka. Album doesn’t get good till the tail end.

    The reviewer mentioned soul samples, someone please give a chopped up soul sample to go over, Triple F started to sound all the same throughout listening to it. Heatmakers were at, call up Waka and cook up something for him.

  • MArc

    I’m tired of XXl giving people like Waka and Wiz L and XL’s for lyrics my eight year old brother can come up with the shit they say. Then they have the nerve to give people like Nas and Jay-z the same rating? get the fuck out of here! These rappers pay them off

  • KRS0519

    This is absurd they give Waka a XL? They gave Los an L for the Crown Aint Safe and his throwaway lines are better than Waka could ever be. Officially done looking at these reviews.

  • Smoovio

    Sooooo Waka and K.R.I.T. got the same rating…..? Oh -__-

  • Smoovio

    “I’m from the souf, southern hospitality soul-food dinners” lmfao. I’m from the A and I can tell you Waka’s music is changing. Don’t even bump him like that no more. XXL yall bullshittin wit this one

  • http://www.xxlmag.com/reviews/2012/06/waka-flocka-flame-triple-f-life-friends-fans-family/ Gansta Chava

    Ohhh Shit Waka Fuck A Flame GOT AN XL
    FOR XTRA LOSER DAMM WAT DA FUCK HAPPEN TO THE REAL SOUTHERN LYRICAL RAPPERS THIS MUTHA FUCKA IS NOT LYRICAL AND THANX TO LEX LUGER GAVE HIM SICK BEATS FOR WAT??? SO HE GET INBESREST OF WAKA DAMM THERE GOES HIP HOP BUT WAIT. THE REAL RAPPER AND COMMING WITH A NEW ALBUM AND IM TALKING ABOUT
    NAS SLAUGHTERHOUSE EMINEM KENDRICK LAMAR TECH N9NE RICK ROSS DR. DRE HOT BOYS 816 BOYZ YEAH RAP IS COMMING BACK AND FUCK IF YOU ARE NOT A TRUE FAN OF RAP
    HOLLY CRAP THIS NEW RAPPERS SUCCK SO MUCH LIKE FURUTE, 2X CHAINZ THEY ALL SOUND THE SAME LIKE WAKA……. GANSTA CHAVA OUT

  • music

    i know waka is poppin but this sounds like all the othr south shit it couldve passed for a L othr albums pop way more harder than sum guy screamin and shouting evrything