If there’s one sound you need to hear in 2028 to bring you instantly back to the middle of the ’10’s, it’s that couple of DJ Mustard synth-basses. There hasn’t been a sound more copied than his since Lil Jon’s crunk. Fan Of A Fan leans heavily on these beats, though only one song is actually produced by DJ Mustard. The record confirms a feeling I have for a while now: the sound is played out.
Fan Of A Fan The Album gets off to a promising start, though. Westside is a laid-back track, remeniscent of -but far worse than- an old TQ song. The lyrics are as generic as they get, with Brown rapping: “But I deal with her, and let her think she made it / I’mma spend it all, shit I’m just playing baby / A 100k for the strippers, just me and my niggas / After that we party with bitches and sippin’ on liquor”. The second track gets lifted to a higher level by the original DJ Mustard rapper Ty Dolla $ign. He delivers his verse with a sense of humor and self-awareness that Tyga and Chris Brown obviously lack. If you’ve played Loyal all summer, chances are you’re listening to Ayo right now. The beat, the obnoxious lyrics (Chris Brown raps: “We in the hood, tatted like a Mexican / Car too fast, give a fuck about pedestrians”), they’re all a little bit too similar to Loyal.
After Ayo, it’s all downhill. The songs start to blend and it’s unclear where one track ends and another one begins. A mediocre verse from 50 Cent on I Bet adds exactly nothing2 and D.G.I.F.U. with Pusha T consists of lyrics ripped from classics like Notorious B.I.G.’s Notorious Thugs, Dr. Dre’s Forgot About Dre, Jay-Z’s Big Pimpin’ and Drake’s Furthest Thing. I appreciate a cleverly created reference, but on this track it feels lazy and undeserved. The only above average track after the album opening is second single Bitches & Marijuana, where Schoolboy Q delivers a show stealing verse (“Grimy nigga way too groovy for the Grammys / Overseas collecting panties, poppin’ Xanies”) and Tyga and Chris Brown do a decent job not the mess the track up.