While they will have to continue to wait on Quan’s major label debut album, he has reclaimed some of his fans with this latest release. Quan’s last two mixtapes had fans questioning whether he had switched styles or the direction he was taking his career in. However, the initial reception for “Back to Basics” has been outstanding, and fans have three words: Quan is back.
The fans are right, the entire tape could be described as an ode to the struggle with subsequently deserved boastfulness. Quan symbolically opens the tape with a dedicated “to the grind” song, in which he reminds everyone “And I swear none of this **** I got was handed to me, never forget I still got me a lil’ family to feed, I swear.”
He then puffs his chest out on “Back End” bragging, “pulled up in something they ain’t never heard of / I ain’t seen no caution tape / but the whole scene, I murder.”
For someone like Quan who relies on the delivery of smooth, boastful punchlines, comes consistently with many more hits than misses, is a huge success.
Quan put his story telling on full display in the Zaytoven produced “Da Streetz.” He details just how early he was exposed to the street life, “17 was worse / felt like I ain’t had no purpose / at 18 was working / at 18 was lurking.” He reminisces on doing whatever he had to for his children. “So they ain’t gotta go through what I used to do when I was breaking in houses / I was trying to make a better life for them / and I succeeded at that.”
Quan shows gratefulness with tracks like “Lord Forgive Me” with bars like, “I don’t stand in traps I no longer supervise / I thank God every night before I close my eyes.”
Quan truly sticks to his ATL roots and influences from other rappers, such as frequent collaborator Young Thug,which is apparent. His southern drawl combined with his muddled delivery are hilariously reflected in Apple Music’s attempt to interpret some of the lyrics. He never misses a chance to remind everyone just how hard he is flexing.
“Hardtop, windows down we riding around / them pistols out / act stuck up cause I’m the **** / you know my *** they kissin’ now, they ain’t seen a real ***** in a minute heard it’s a drought.”
In an interview with XXL magazine’s Sidney Madden, Rich Homie Quan said, “I decided to name it ‘Back to the Basics’ because it’s like going back to the genre that I started with and just giving the fans the Quan they want as opposed to the Quan I wanted to be.”
If this was the goal, it is safe to say he has succeeded. His fanbase’s initial response has been nothing but positive.
It is not groundbreaking, re-inventive hip-hop by any means, but that is not something you would expect from Rich Homie Quan in the first place.