“[Co-signs] may get you through the door, but the cohesiveness, meticulous quality, depth and the overall experience of are what prompt you to make yourself at home.”

Remember when people were dead ass convinced that Your Old Droog was Nas? He had a slightly different delivery—of course. Well, after playing the latest Matt Citron project through a few times, I guess I can understand why some passing by asked me what Drake record that was. His cadence is quite similar, but his content is anything but sweet. Final Moments Of Forever is a lot [of things] at once. It’s a bar for bar platter of ATL hip-hop with an east coast aesthetic and a precedence for new rappers [skill and quality wise]p; it’s an audio portrait of an artist with an obsession and dedication to both this music game and his dreams.

Matt sets himself up as a lyricist off the bat over the boom-bap-ish drum loop of “Save My Soul,” before taking it to early 2000 vibe on the ultra-jazzy “One Time.” He gives a commentary on the perceptions about him—and on the severe lack of differentiation between [today’s] artists—on “Never Worried.” It probably stands as the most contemporary sounding record on the album; “who were you before you were you; all these new rappers who is who,” he laments, reflecting on the sea of similarity.

While “Stay Down” talks about his dedication to his grind—which has paid off—”All That I Need” and the outro of the record “Shallow Waters” seem to suggest the role that his grind has had on his relationships. The music life is a mistress after all, especially when your artist with as much buzz on Matt. The latter record also delves into his past, with the chorus reflecting on how much he’s [personally] grown and overcome over the years on his road to the position he’s sitting in today.

The record also has more radio-friendly moments, like the Cyhi The Prince-assisted “404,” and “Dancing Bones,” with a sing-song hook and an overall vibe that reminds me of Anderson Paak and Mac Miller’s “Dang!”

Look, getting major artists to be on your records, and appear in your videos, is [in most cases] more of an outward display of wealth and connection for unknown artists. A few emails to a manager and some money exchanged; anything is possible. Having iconic artists vibe with you in the studio, though, requires a certain level of mutual respect that is priceless. Not only does Matt humbly lay claim to such relationships, but he gracefully chose to release a record that fails to exploit them. The fact that Big Boi, Busta, and producers like Buckwild co-sign him may get you through the door, but the cohesiveness, meticulous quality, depth and the overall experience of Final Moments Of Forever are what prompt you to make yourself at home. If you don’t know, now you know—ninja.