Jhere’s a poignant moment from Megan Thee Stallion’s June interview with rolling stone where she reflects on why she received backlash for being shot in the feet in 2020, allegedly by rapper Tory Lanez. Because she dared to name her alleged attacker after initially keeping her name private, Megan was immediately accused of lying and faced an outpouring of criticism and skepticism.
She said that out of nowhere, she became a “bad guy” in a situation that she was actually the victim of. She wonders aloud, “I don’t know if people don’t take it seriously because I look strong,” then continues, “Is it because I’m not light enough? Am I not white enough? Am I not the form? The height? Because I’m not small? Don’t I look like I deserve to be treated like a woman?
As Megan became more famous, the battles she faced became more difficult, both interpersonally and within herself. The 27-year-old Houston native has been in the spotlight for about four years now since she released “Cocky AF,” one of her first hit songs, still exploding with tracks like “Savage,” “Hot Girl Summer” and the Cardi B Collaboration “WAP”. Since then she has released five projects, a mix of full albums, mixtapes and EPs. His sixth, Traumazine, which arrived today, is an 18-track album that takes listeners through her psyche as she deals with various struggles in her life. These include the loss of her mother and grandmother, the grueling demands of fame, a messy legal battle with her record label, and the difficulties of balancing her career as Megan Thee Stallion with her life as Megan Pete.
On Traumazine, Megan alternates between knocking down all the obstacles that stand in her way and realizing that some obstacles will take longer to pass than others. Here are the five biggest takeaways from his latest album.
Megan is pissed, and for good reason
Over the past three years, Megan Thee Stallion has gone through many ups and downs, all of which have come under intense public scrutiny. On social media, she assumes a carefree and easy-going personality. But on her latest album, Megan wants to make sure listeners don’t get the wrong idea. She can be all those positive things, but don’t try to contradict her.
At the beginning of the album, Megan’s anger is strong and is felt in her performance of certain bars. On the opener, “NES,” the production’s tone is dark and ominous as she raps about not being the one to play with anymore: “Next all of you hoes wanna get bold, I’m gonna check that out / And the next of y’all blogs wanna spread lies, I’ll sue you / next bitch that’ll break my NDA, they’re going for you too Megan then shows off her penchant for slurs on “Not Nice” as she shoots people who have wronged her and assumes people don’t take her seriously because she’s a black woman.” I guess my skin ain’t fair enough, my dialect n ain’t white enough / Or maybe I’m just not shaped for them simpletons to give a damn.”
She shines when she’s most vulnerable
Being a good artist requires growth and relatability, two hallmarks of most songs in Megan’s discography. With Traumazine, we see her dig deeper into her insecurities on tracks like “Anxiety,” where she raps, “I’m a bad female dog, and I got bad anxiety,” and “Flip Flop,” where she talks about how fame can be isolating by not knowing who you can trust. She delivers one of the album’s most heartbreaking lines on this song when she says, “If your mama and daddy still walk this Earth / Then you probably don’t feel my pain.”
Megan honed her singing skills for this new record
In her projects, Megan tends to experiment with different sounds, and sometimes the risk just doesn’t pay off—see: “Don’t Rock Me to Sleep” by Good news. This song was criticized for its overtly bubblegum-pop touch, which seemed out of touch with the rapper’s sound. But she didn’t give up experimenting, and now she’s managed to mold her singing into pieces that sound like her own. We see it in parts of “Flip Flop”, “Star” with Lucky Daye and “Consistency” with Jhené Aiko, on which Megan harmonizes beautifully. Aiko and Daye’s names appearing on the tracklist came as a shock to many, as the rapper doesn’t often do feature films with R&B artists, but it’s a risk that paid off.
She knows how to choose collaborators who reinforce a title
Megan doesn’t need any help making a song great. After all, there are few people who can keep up with his loud rapping style. Still, she chooses wisely from these few. For “Scary,” Megan chose a rapper whose style was a perfect fit: Rico Nasty. The haunting track features chilling production perfectly suited to Rico’s gothic touch and expressive rap delivery. The album also includes collaborations with Latto, Memphis rappers Key Glock and Pooh Shiesty, and Future. She pays homage to her hometown by inviting three famous Houston rappers, Sauce Walka, Lil’ Keke and Big Pokey, to swap bars on “Southside Royalty Freestyle.”
With this record, Megan is free in more ways than one.
Dr. Adrienne Heinz, a trauma and addictions researcher at Stanford University, said SELF that to process trauma, “You have to go through it to get past it.” On Traumazine, it feels like watching Megan do just that. We see the ups and downs; it’s an intimate look at how she feels.
But beyond her own emotional journey, there’s also a legal journey she’s endured. Over the past two years, Megan has faced a legal battle with 1501 Certified Entertainment, the label she originally signed with in 2018. She had wanted to terminate her contract for some time and sued the label in March 2020 for the allegedly prevented from going out. new music. In short, Megan had to fulfill her contractual obligations with a number of albums released under the label. After releasing her previous project, “Something For Thee Hotties”, 1501 claimed the project was not an album, and Megan filed a countersuit arguing that it was. If a judge decides in his favour, then this album could fulfill its obligations.
Alluding to those challenges, she tweeted, “Thank you hotties for swinging with me through the WE ALMOST OUT bullshit.” If this album helps her get out of her contract, it will be a poetic end to her time as “1501 Queen” and something of a revival of Megan Thee Stallion.
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