Ohio-native Trippie Redd has spent the last four years of his career developing a unique sound within the emo-rap genre. Since the first installment of his A Love Letter to You series, Trippie has formed a signature style of heart-broken shrills over hard trap beats and love-sick melodies that make you think about that time you got your heartbroken when you were 16.
One of the 21-year-old’s biggest criticisms up to this point has been his versatility, or lack thereof. While Trippie has a plethora of positive intangibles that leave his fans craving more, the lyrical content, sound and feel of his discography have generally remained the same.
Trippie’s third studio album Pegasus aims to create a world in which the artist’s sound is without limits and fully encompasses his sonic creativity.
“The direction on the album is supposed to feel mystical,” Trippie said in an interview with Lyrical Lemonade back in April. “Everything is going to feel like some off-the-wall fairy tale type s—t.”
While Pegasus is a solid effort from a more mature Trippie Redd than fans may have seen in the past, its focus is too scattered and its content doesn’t warrant a grueling 74-minutes of run time.
Trippie welcomes us to the mythical concept that is Pegasus with somber psychedelic sounds and heart-pouring lyrics in “Let it Out” with Myiah Lynnae. The duo’s harmony sets a melancholic tone that feels similar to what we got from ALLTTY4’s “Leray.” The first five tracks stick to this slow, eerie theme until we reach Trippie’s trap-infused R&B hit “Excitement” featuring PARTYNEXTDOOR.
“Mood” is the first among many misses of this album. The Chris Brown-featured track on paper looks like it should be one of the most important and enjoyable love songs on Pegasus. Breezy’s verse, though smooth as expected, feels as though it’s fighting with Trippie’s. With both stars having such a distinct sound, it feels as if the song could’ve been a solo track for either artist. To say the least, “Mood” is a waste of a Chris Brown feature, and amongst the list of songs that failed to enhance the album or convey its vision.
Amongst other letdowns are “Personal Favorite” with frequently disappointing collaborator Rich the Kid, a pitiful Playboi Carti rip-off in “Good Morning” and “Kid That Kidd” featuring Future and Doe Boy whose chorus sounds vaguely similar to Tay-K’s “Megaman.”
While there are many dim and dull moments of Pegasus, Trippie shines in several spots of the album.
The album’s nineteenth track entitled “Oomp’s Revenge Pt.2” gives us the rare lyrical hip-hop side of Trippie that we’ve heard in songs “Can You Rap Like Me?” and “Can You Rap Like Me — Pt.2” with friend and 1400/800 label mate Chris King.
Two of Pegasus’ most fitting features come from two prominent figures in Atlanta rap. “Spaceships” with Young Thug is a vibey track fit perfect for Thugger’s angelic and typically unpredictable flow. The proceeding track “Never Change” with Future is an instant trap classic about lessons the two artists have learned and how success never changed their character or integrity.
The most notable highlight of Pegasus comes right before the album’s closing track. The Swae Lee featured “TR666” is a song that truly gives the album a euphoric and surreal feeling. Originally released on SoundCloud back in 2018, the song was removed in order to be officially released on a later project. The 3-minute track ironically begins with a biblical excerpt from Isaiah 54:17. The chorus’s lyrics “Until you try / You’ll never know” are an encouraging message to believe in yourself and trust your intuition. Swae Lee’s wavy falsetto tone is the perfect assist that makes the listener close their eyes and feel the vibe.
While production is a lowlight of this album, there are a number of songs with unforgettable beats. “Take One” is a spacey, bass-boosted track in which Trippie uses a brash vocal tone to convey his “larger than life” or “immortal” persona. “Sleepy Hollow” is a classic fast-paced moshpit anthem for all the ragers.
Pegasus is by no means a bad album, but it’s incredibly surprising that it took Trippie two years to put it all together.
While the album has several highlights as far as features and vocals go, there are too many clashing themes in this concept to make it a cohesive body of work, and it pales in comparison to Life’s A Trip and ALLTY3 from a storytelling standpoint.
The best thing about Trippie Redd is his youth. At only 21 years old, the Canton rapper is one of the biggest names in the genre and is still sitting on numerous projects that have yet to be released. One of them is a collaborative 1400/800 Mixtape with label mates Sunny 2point0, ShootEmUp, K Suave, Chris King and Teezo Touchdown. The mixtape is said to be executive produced by Pierre Bourne, but a recent falling out this summer between Trippie and Bourne may have either delayed that possibly or ruined it completely.
Trippie has announced a deluxe version of Pegasus entitled Neon Shark, which will be a punk-pop and rock album. The 14-track album is expected to release on Nov. 13 and will feature Travis Barker, Machine Gun Kelly, Scarlxrd and ZillaKami.