Travis Scott is a Houston born rapper who’s been on a real tear as of late, landing plenty of high charting anthems and to try and pick a favourite of his songs is like asking me which family member I prefer, but here it is; my top 10 favourite songs from LA Flame himself.
10: 3500 feat. 2 Chainz & Future (From ‘Rodeo’)
A smash hit from Travis’ 2015 debut studio album ‘Rodeo’, 3500 is a trap anthem with unique flavours and quick transitions from intense bass in the hook to the subtle keys in the verses. Travis outdoes himself in the hook and it stands to this day as one of the best he has ever done. The term “3500” is apparently linked to the $3,500 spent by Kim Kardashian on a coat for her infant daughter North West, a seemingly rockstar enough decision for Travis to dedicate a song to it. Guest vocals come from Atlanta’s own Future and 2 Chainz who both add the best they have to offer, whether it is 2 Chainz’s hilarious lyricism or Future’s low-key turn up vibe. The standout element of this track is definitely the cohesion Travis has with the majestic production and the way the song develops, as we go on it gets more progressive and the use of enhanced guitar chords becomes prominent, something very rare in a trap hit.
9: Mamacita feat. Rich Homie Quan & Young Thug (From ‘Days Before Rodeo’)
More guitar chords in this track, a single from his ‘Days Before Rodeo’ mixtape and the sound is crazy. The combination of Travis, Young Thug and Rich Homie Quan on this song is pure insanity but it works like an absolute dream. A big plus point is definitely the way they all connect on the track, ad-libbing each other and complimenting the tones that each of them create; Rich Homie Quan is the far deeper of the three while Young Thug’s tones are squeaky in delivery but in the best kind of way. Travis really goes in on his verse too which is great because he is often criticised for his persistence to focus on hooks and autotune rather than outright rapping, but here he kills it. Be sure to listen to Thug screaming “woo” a few times throughout the song, it is nothing short of art.
8: Goosebumps feat Kendrick Lamar (from ‘Birds In The Trap Sing McKnight’)
This can be credited as the song which made Travis Scott a chart sensation and not just a trap god. It soared to the top of the Billboard charts and even pushed the album to the top of the album chart. Travis absolutely loves it too, how can I tell? In one of his shows, he performed it 14 times, breaking a new world record and making sure that LA Flame will indeed go down in history. The song has energy, a catchy hook, a crazy modern beat and a great Kendrick Lamar feature, in other words it has got the lot. Speaking of that Kendrick feature, people don’t like it and I have absolutely no idea why, his characterisation and the wordplay is everything you’d want from K-Dot and I think he added to the song brilliantly. It is now Travis’ biggest hit and to top Antidote it must be huge.
7: Oh My Dis Side feat Quavo (from ‘Rodeo’)
Much like many of the tracks on Travis’ classic debut album, the progression and switch up on production is something to be truly admired on this track as it almost sounds like two different songs entirely whilst also working for the entire duration. The cohesion between Travis and Quavo is exemplary as they bounce back and forth off each other creating some great harmony together musically. It is easily one of my favourites on Rodeo and one of the best non singles La Flame will ever do.
6: Beibs In The Trap feat. NAV (From ‘Birds In The Trap Sing McKnight’)
The song title is bizarre, but let me explain. Travis Scott uses the ever popular figure of white singer Justin Beiber as a slang term for cocaine, so he is actually talking about coke in the trap. NAV was unknown at this point, so when he kicked in with his hook everyone was blown away, he does such a stellar job on there that he takes the crown for one of the best hooks on this album, considering this is a project from the king of hooks that is rather impressive. Travis uses heavy autotune on his voice to signify his drug use and how out of it he may be when taking these drugs and the sound it creates is just great. It was one of the bigger hits from his Birds In The Trap album and it is plain to see why, a non-stop anthem.
5: Pick Up The Phone feat. Young Thug & Quavo (From ‘Birds In The Trap Sing McKnight’)
On Twitter not long ago I described this song as a “religious bop” and that it should be made the US National Anthem. Am I wrong? Absolutely not. The beat is the most ridiculous thing you will ever hear but this is Travis and Young Thug we are talking about, they can make just about any beat work. They make this beat work so well that it sounds genius, it sounds like a masterpiece. Travis has hook responsibilities and leaves the first two verses to Young Thug and both are suited to their roles down to a T, with Thugger wilding out talking about leaning like his granny did and Travis adds that attitude on the hook. Then we get a Quavo feature and he just adds so much sauce onto the track it is amazing, he name drops Macaulay Culkin and even names Travis Scott’s album for him (yes this is where Travis got the BITTSM album title from), visionary stuff from Migos’ main man. It went platinum earlier in the year and quite frankly I won’t rest until it goes at least quadruple platinum.
4: Antidote (From ‘Rodeo’)
The song which made every mainstream hip-hop fan know who Travis Scott was. It is one of the biggest trap bangers of all time and has an absolutely stunning melody from start to finish. What makes it so dazzling to me is that there isn’t really any rapping in it until the last minute or so but the verses are so fantastically executed you can hardly complain, combining drug use with a rock and roll lifestyle of cars and women. It was never proclaiming to be the most thought-provoking or relatable song of all time, but what it does do is slap and make everyone listening to it lose their minds. “Anything can happen at the Night Show” is a perfect description, of course referring to his live shows, as to how this song was intended to be listened to; as a bat-shit crazy banger. When he does start rapping it is a joy to behold, the verse he comes out with is absolutely phenomenal and a perfect insight into how Travis lives his life now that he is a big time star. Embracing the lifestyle and bringing all of his fans with him, what a song.
3: Apple Pie (From ‘Rodeo’)
The finale of the non-deluxe version of Rodeo, Apple Pie serves as a demonstration as to how artistically advanced Travis Scott is, managing to create a conceptual heartfelt track while also giving it a trap flavour and making it a banger in the process. The hook is all about standing on his own two feet, being independent and paying back all of those who helped him along the way. The lyrics used do reference his mother but I feel it is just a general statement for those who have helped him all his life. The piano keys mixed with the bass heavy beat make this one an absolute winner and he switches his flows absolutely brilliantly throughout the track, using autotune as a weapon rather than a crutch. Also there is a TI spoken word finale, what more could you possibly want?
2: Drugs You Should Try It (From ‘Days Before Rodeo’)
This is the defining moment in Travis Scott’s career in my opinion; the song which proved to us all that not only was he here to stay but he was also here to make serious waves in the genre, creating a legacy that will last years. It is without question the best song from the Days Before Rodeo mixtape and the fact that I have ranked it higher than the likes of Antidote and Goosebumps tells you all you need to know. If you haven’t heard it yet which is entirely likely due to it not being on Spotify then please give it a try, it is dark, mysterious and raw with intensity from the get go. It truly is the song that got me into Travis and I have a lot to thank it for.
1: 90210 feat. Kacy Hill (From ‘Rodeo’)
Simply the greatest. He will never do anything that comes close to this song, end of discussion. If you haven’t heard it, do yourself a favour and listen to it; ignore the stigma of Travis Scott as a rapper and listen to the song, it is just the art form of music being manipulated into the most magnificent beast. The song’s progression takes over your soul, it moves you into a new kind of atmosphere and Kacy Hill’s gorgeous vocal melodies do so much to aid the genius of this track. At exactly 2:28 in the song the magic kicks in, the beat switch is heavenly and the sampling is a masterstroke, Travis transforms into a thought-provoking mastermind who tackles the responsibilities of his life, a far cry from his pill-popping antics on other songs he makes. I could talk about this song forever and I am not afraid to call this song one of the best and most artistic I have heard this decade, it rubs shoulders with the absolute greats. It is so good I am going to call him Jacques (his real name). So Jacques, well done, we are not worthy.