A$AP Twelvyy, the Harlem native and A$AP Mob member, has released his second project of the year, Noon Yung.
Twelvyy came out swinging with his debut album 12, which impressed listeners with its perfectly blended sound of old school and new school hip-hop. He followed up 12 with an equally impressive yet more confident and upbeat project in Before Noon, which seems to be the predecessor to Noon Yung.
To be blunt, Noon Yung does not live up to the expectations that he had previously set for himself with his two previous projects. What makes Twelvyy special is his unique beat selection with an easygoing and nonchalant flow that can carry a track effortlessly.
On 12, he appeared introspective and, at times, despondent. While it’s good to see Twelvyy more confident and boastful, he seems to have lost the passion-inspired sound that he once created with 12.
Before Noon features mostly upbeat, self-indulging tracks, but the instrumentals are ultimately what sets Before Noon apart from Noon Yung.
Noon Yung’s instrumentals are bland. There are hard-hitting beats with catchy 808s and clever one-liners from Twelvyy, but that’s not what sets him apart from his peers.
What sets him apart is his ability to flood his tracks with honest, somber verses over obscure yet New York-reminiscent instrumentals. He failed to reference that much with Noon Yung.
While this project is filled with one-dimensional tracks, there are a few that are evocative of the highlights of his previous projects.
“Endless Waltz” and “Love Jones” are melancholy tracks with personal, inward-looking verses from Twelvyy. “Endless Waltz” talks about the losses that Twelvyy has had to deal with throughout his life, most notably the loss of one of his best friends, A$AP Yams, in 2015.
“G.D.Y., Pt. 1” is an extraordinary showcase of Twelvyy’s storytelling lyricism, which is something he relied heavily on throughout 12. Throughout the other tracks, however, his lyricism is still solid, but it’s nothing out of the ordinary. At times, tracks like “What a Day” and “Powerpuff Girls,” among others, become monotonous.
The track that was the most shocking was “Fahrenheit 2020.” The emphatic, energetic instrumental meshes perfectly with Twelvyy’s harsh, gritty and, at times, loud and demanding flow. Speaking on recent issues like COVID-19 and police brutality, it is nearly impossible to ignore Twelvyy’s aggressive approach to this track.
Similarly, “New Amerika” with Conway the Machine is another gritty track that features ruthless verses from both Twelvyy and Conway the Machine. Twelvyy’s collaboration with Conway the Machine, a member of Griselda, was unexpected, but their attitudes blended together with perfection on the track.
The instrumental on “Weatherman” is the most reminiscent of any track off 12. The jazz and soul-inspired instrumental is a perfect template for Twelvyy to flow smoothly. However, most of the project doesn’t take the listeners through Twelvyy’s highs and lows, as they typically tend to repeat the same themes of street life and luxury with no uniqueness.
A$AP Twelvyy is arguably the most complete artist in A$AP Mob, but Noon Yung failed to prove how unique of an artist Twelvyy can be. Artists are always hoping to progress with each project, but it seems that Twelvyy took a couple of steps backward with Noon Yung.