Future Pluto

In hip-hop, there's a time and place for every kind of recording. For Future, that time is now and the place is Atlanta. Future's debut album, Pluto, harkens back to the very early hip-hop singles from Profile and Tommy Boy, in that they are not timeless records. Picking up where T-Pain left off in 2009, Future switches back and forth from full-on Auto-Tuned crooning to laidback party flows. His rapping voice is partly dance hall-influenced and the other half comes from the strip clubs of the ATL. That's where most of the rappers in the South sound check their material ― where the bass kicks straight. Pluto is an album to be enjoyed while in the car. Ipod headphones simply cannot do Sonny Digital's monstrous 808s and rattling snares justice on "Same Damn Time," and R. Kelly's meandering flow ("Parachute") is somewhat lost in the confines of your own home. Pluto should be enjoyed amongst good company, yet at the same time there is underplayed diversity in the R&B efforts of a trap producer like Mike Will Made-It ("Truth Gonna Hurt You," "Neva End," "Turn On the Lights"). Pluto is a fun listen; it's not your typical trap fare from the South, as Future understands the virtue of standing out. Like he says on record, he's "a rock star forever," notwithstanding the longevity of his art. If he makes smart moves, Future could be the Juicy J of the 2020s. (A1/Epic)