Family has always played a major role in Maxo Kream’s music. His 2019 masterpiece Brandon Banks is named after his father, while his new album’s release date coincides with his niece Jalae’s birthday as well as the anniversary of his cousin Andrew’s death. WEIGHT OF THE WORLD captures the weight of his trauma and experiences growing up within a body of work that is striking, sonically eclectic and incredibly poignant.
The Texas bounce is still prevalent throughout the entire project, as Maxo flows effortlessly throughout the 18-track album, providing deep and emotive anecdotes on his personal and family life with a piercing, storytelling prowess. His life hasn’t been easy, and he makes sure to let everyone know on the opening track “CRIPSTIAN”, as his first bar on the album is “Before I spend my life in jail, I’ll rather die and burn in hell”. It’s clear, especially having followed Maxo Kream’s music since 2018’s Punken, that he is much more comfortable and straightforward talking about the darker side to his story, his thoughts and observations about life around him. This comes with age and experience, as well as musical maturity, something he has built over the last few years. This is what makes WEIGHT OF THE WORLD, to me at least, his best and most complete projects to date. The dynamic beat-changes, melodic and soulful loops and samples, as well as Maxo Kream’s dominant vocal performance, makes this album such an entertaining, engaging and introspective body of work. “THEY SAY” and “LOCAL JOKER” are examples of the sonically lighter and more soulful moments on the album, as he talks about how his hustle growing up and before he found success as a musician, led him to where he is now. It’s inspiring hearing some of these stories on tape, and his ability to construct these intricate thoughts into incredible flows on an incredibly lively and colourful album is something to truly admire. My favourite track on the project “MAMA’S PURSE”, is dedicated to his mother. Her traumas and struggles are exemplified by Maxo Kream through piercing lyrics about her struggle and growth. “Put a pricetag on her love but can’t afford how much it’s worth” is such a poignant line and shows exactly how much love he has for her and all she has done for him. It’s a beautiful and emotive moment on the album, and exemplary of Maxo Kream’s incredible songwriting and lyricism. The producers and features do their thing on this album, and really help bring this body of work to life. Freddie Gibbs on “WHAT I LOOK LIKE” and Tyler, The Creator on “BIG PERSONA” were fantastic and two of my favourite guests on the album.
It’s so inspiring seeing Maxo Kream go from strength to strength as an artist. With each and every project, the talented emcee has been able to craft incredibly cohesive albums, all with their distinct sonic palettes, flows and themes. His incredible flows are complemented by dynamic, groove-driven beats that are infectious and memorable. WEIGHT OF THE WORLD is Maxo Kream’s most complete, personal and reflective body of work to date.
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