The trap sound has become a staple in the city, as many artists have attempted to duplicate its formula, one that garners the attention of listeners searching for music that speaks to them. Artist Tae Fresh is at the forefront of this sound, one he’s elevated through his stories of struggle growing up in North Columbus, his lifestyle prior to rap, his failed relationships with women, and his rising success in Columbus’ music scene. His latest project “Chances” decodes these same sentiments, offering a six-track autobiographical look at the risks he’s taken upon arriving at his current space.
Throughout the project, Fresh reflects on the pain, love, hard work, and success he’s obtained due to his life experiences, expressing these emotions over auto tuned vocals and piano-based melodies. Stylistically, the album centers on these elements, while producers PJbeats, Nate C Beats and BigMeech614 integrate trap-indulged hi-hats and kicks to create Fresh’s signature sound.
The opening track “Run It Up” sets the thematic tone for the project, as it addresses the struggles he endured in the streets prior to his new-found success. Now that he’s escaped the environment, he intends on celebrating the recognition he’s received by running up a check. However, with Fresh’s success comes changes, both within himself and the relationships he’s built throughout his life. On the project highlight “Down Bad,” he reflects on the people who’ve supported him, and those that are leaching on his rising status.
At his most vulnerable state, Fresh indicates his uncertainty on “Worth It,” as he contemplates whether his hard work is worth the changes in his life. As a result, he confronts his issues with balancing the two subjects, as well as the effects of his apprehensions. “I didn’t go to church today, was it worth it/I just hope the lord forgive me, I aint perfect/My old friends changed on me, I know they’re hurting.” On the closer “Realize,” Fresh continues addressing his conflicting relationships, as he details the emotional pain he’s faced. “I thought you was loyal/I gave you my heart/You put it in the toilet.” Through this desolation, he knows she’ll realize what she’s done and everything she’s missing.
Overall, the project has interesting moments of transparency, as Fresh openly expresses the ambitions, insecurities, and emotions attributed to his arising status in Columbus’ music scene. His vocals blend seamlessly with the melodically pearlescent production, which helps to craft a reflective and storied project. Though these elements presumably succeed in creating an enjoyable project, it also contains lyrical filler and empty musical spots. Due to Fresh’s lack of advanced lyrical ability, the stories he conveys at times lack substance and detail, as he merely skims over his thoughts without constructing a thawed out narrative. Regardless, “Chances” is a solid body of work that draws in the listener with simple and engaging music.