By Ethan Hamilton
For many PARTYNEXTDOOR fans, their first introduction to him was through Drake when he announced that he signed PND to his new label OVO Sound in 2013. It’s been three years since PND’s last release and after much anticipation and constant postponement, “PARTYMOBILE” is finally here.
PND’s biggest strength has always been his songwriting, and more importantly his attention to detail. On P2 and PNDColours, he shows how obsessively in love he is with his girl that would make the toxic king, Future, smirk.
The detail involving his love life and how controlling he is towards his partner is second to none. This elite songwriting usually covers up for his monotone and robotic voice that people critique him for; however, on “PARTYMOBILE” that attention to detail is lacking for much of the project.
On PND’s new album, “PARTYMOBILE,” he doesn’t seem to be the writer he once was. Most of the songs come off as bland and like a poor Young Thug impression. He failed to build on the foundation he had built with the release of “THE NEWS”, “SPLIT DECISION” and “LOYAL FT. Drake”.
The sound of the album revolves around dancehall, but the writing had no color or fun to it at all. It’s as if the album would have been better off if someone else had written it and had left PARTY to focus on his vocals.
The highlight of the album has to be “SAVAGE ANTHEM”. “SAVAGE ANTHEM” shows how great PND’s writing can be when he is at his best.
On this track, PARTY goes into detail on his cheating escapades in his last relationship, but he isn’t apologizing or asking for forgiveness. Instead, he is manipulating his girl into thinking that him acknowledging his faults is the same thing as apologizing.
He sounds like a toxic partner that would be the antithesis of a person that you wouldn’t want to be involved with, but this is where PARTY is at his best. However, he didn’t operate in this mindset enough on the project.
The long-awaited Rihanna feature appeared on the song “BELIEVE IT.” Rihanna disappointingly didn’t offer a full-length verse and only did the short hook.
So, I guess Rihanna stans will still have to wait for R9 to hear her voice. On this track, PND seems to show a little more effort to warrant a feature from the megastar, but it seems to be lacking the catchiness to be a hit that it was intended to be.
For the most part, “PARTYMOBILE” lacks the emotion and passion that fans of PARTYNEXTDOOR fell in love with. “THE NEWS” seems like a leftover from P2 and doesn’t fit the dancehall theme of the project.
Rihanna doesn’t seem to do enough on “BELIEVE IT” to attract enough replay value and “SAVAGE ANTHEM” is an early contender for Song of the Year.
PARTYNEXTDOOR seems to be imitating Young Thug and Khalid for much of the project and fails to offer enough of his signature sound that fans, like myself, loved about him.
It’s a solid project but it makes me wonder what else could have been done.
Featured image via PARTNEXTDOOR and OVO Sound.