Wunna is Gunna’s masterpiece, one that finds the low-ceiling rapper maximizing his particular hip hop style.
Wunna is a masterpiece — or, to be more accurate, it’s Gunna’s masterpiece. Or, if we’re getting really specific, this is probably the closest Gunna will ever come to releasing a masterpiece; it’s difficult to imagine the formula being improved upon from here, and that’s OK. By this point in Sergio Giavanni Kitchens’ career, he has a firm enough sense of his abilities and limitations to know how best to approach his craft: get Wheezy (no, not that Weezy) to produce every track, have a few of your closest pals show up (Lil Baby, Travis Scott, Nav, etc.), and generally try to sound as wavy as possible whenever on the mic. Sure, it’s a formula — but Gunna is, if we’re being terribly honest here, a formulaic MC in every sense of the word, one who brazenly skipped his XXL Freshman freestyle on the basis that he’s not actually that good at this whole “rapping” thing. But one doesn’t need to be a proficient wordsmith to make good rap music, a fact that has been proven time and time again, and Gunna here proves himself to be rather skillful at making good rap music.
He comes close to making great rap music with “Dollaz on My Head,” one of his best collaborations with his mentor Young Thug, where the duo bend their vocals over the relaxed Mike Will Made It beat, culminating with some choice bars about their personal demons — “I got skeletons in my closets, and they scared of me and shit” — before leading into “Addies,” a song about, duh, taking a lot of adderall; it even has a chorus where Gunna just repeatedly mutters “addies, addies, addies,” and it’s honestly great stuff. “Rockstar Bikers & Chains” lives up to its hefty title (albeit, by sampling an opening theme to an American anime) and saunters with an offhand bravado, while “Top Floor,” with its exultant opening horn section, sounds like what one might hear on a heavenward ascent. This is all to suggest that Wunna is a joyous affair, and a largely easy listen; it’s inoffensive to a degree that makes it pleasant background music during its more low key sections — usually whenever there isn’t a guest feature — and exciting when things pick up steam. So, perhaps calling this a masterpiece is a bit of a stretch, but for an artist who has released some of the most generic trap music for the past few years, the album’s shift is something of a feat in and of itself. For now, Wunna is a certified classic — just so long as you add a few asterisks to that descriptor.
Published as part of What Would Meek Do? | Q3 2020 Issue.