Lil Durk’s getting back on his grind, but he wasn’t always focused on creating music. In April, the 2014 XXL Freshman was in the beginnings of a heated feud with Tyga, which stemmed from referencing his fiancée Blac Chyna on an unreleased track called “Get Dat Money.” Back and forth disses on the “Chiraq” beat, as well as other players (Game, Chief Keef, G Count of L.E.P. Bogus Boys) got involved who sided with either MC. The beef was finally squashed between both Tyga and Game, where Durk felt that it was time to put his past behind him. After some delays, Durk released the second installment of Signed To The Streets that has him floating on thunderous production with his signature street rhymes. He addresses everything going on in his life so far, from the untimely passing of OTF NuNu to the incarceration of RondoNumbaNine. On this mixtape, Durk’s continued growth and progression is on full display.
Lil Durk wastes no time heating up as he goes off on the intro with straight bars and no hooks. Tracks like “Ready For ‘Em and “Ten Four” show the depths of his flows, even borrowing Drake’s lines from “We Made It” for added measure. Later on “War Wit Us, Durl tears through the vivacious track using a Lil Reese-esque flow – aggressive combined with an melodic hook. Lines like “Remember those days I was starving, empty stomach no car or no money/These niggas be tweaking, that’s why I got shooters on dummy” are prime examples of his vivid storytelling. It is tracks like this that set the tone for the entire project.
Just like on Signed To The Streets, Young Chop handles the bulk of the production and delivers his patented sound. Standout songs lke “Party,” “Feds Listening” and “I Made It” show the power duo can enter a zone of their own. When paired with Atlanta rappers like the buzzing Young Thug, for example, his infectious and eccentric flow alongside Durk are a undeniable combination. The same goes for “Lil Niggaz,” which features Ca$h Out and Migos.
Another quality of Signed To The Streets 2 is that it invites fans into more of who Durk is, as he sounds more open to share his hardships and struggles. His maturity shines and reaches new depths throughout the entire mixtape. On “Don’t Take It Personal,” the 21-year-old MC gets a few things off his chest that has him feeling some type of way. “Where you was at when I was in that war?, I had nobody but me and my boy.” … “They told me I wouldn’t be shit/They ask for hooks and features on some free shit,” he declares. In “Rumors,” he continues to vent his frustrations in hearsay and disloyalty that comes with success. Others explore Chicago and the ongoing violence found in “Don’t Know Me” and “Hell In My City.”
Signed to the Streets 2 shows a promising road for the young artist whose has bright future ahead of him. The project highlights both his growth from his previous tape and the room for improvement for his debut album Remember My Name. He has shown to be a fast learner in the rap game, which should translate into him honing in his skills needed to continue rising to the top. Durk’s still hungry for more.—Ryan Chandler