True to Self image

True to Self

Album by Bryson Tiller
2017, 19 tracks, 59 mins 42 sec


Jun 28, 2019

Stays True to Self But Not To Us

There’s a reason the term “sophomore slump” exists. It’s public acceptance that following up something you did at a high level tends to be much tougher than your initial attempts. We see it in sports after an athlete has an amazing rookie season. It’s most definitely prevalent in music. Really, anything that can be consumed and judged by the public scrutiny is subject to hitting that sophomore wall. In music, fans are quite simplistic and picky when it comes to their artists. Many times, we are slow to accept an artist when they decide to change or alter what ultimately made us fans. Sometimes, the changes are for the better, like when Eminem, decided to become sober. Many agree the music suffered but how can we really be upset for a man becoming more healthy? Other times, the changes seem to happen for no reason, and this is where fans get really perplexed, and sometimes upset. Enter Bryson Tiller. In 2015, the Louisville, Kentucky singer/songwriter/and part-time rapper gave birth to a new genre with the release of his debut album Trap Soul. Filled with exceptional production, matched with original and relatable lyrics and melodies reminiscent of classic late 90s R&B, it was hard to go anywhere that summer and not hear “Pen Griffey". With standout records like “Don’t” “Exchange”, “The Sequence”, and “Sorry not Sorry”, Trap Soul was not void of hits or Instagram caption worthy content. I vividly remember my girlfriend at the time playing this album on repeat, as often as what seemed like every day. Going further, I pride myself as being the one to introduce others to new music and try and ignore when others do the same to me, after all, that’s my job! But, I just couldn’t deny this album any longer, it was all around great music and the artists story was even more interesting. He represented hard work and what happens when you feel like you have no other choice but to succeed. After hearing his interviews, you just wanted him to win, and he was clearly doing just that.

May 10, 2019

He Paved His Own Lane By Staying “True To Self”

From his genre-shifting introductory album, TrapSoul many felt his sophomore album True To Self did not live up to the expectation, hype and anticipation as his debut. As much shit as people gave Bryson Tiller for this album, I just don't understand because True To Self is a decent album. Critics alike must understand that Bryson Tiller's initial buzz arose from the Soundcloud platform and that he is still maturing in his artist development and as a recording artist. Honestly, I can't say that True To Self is better than TrapSoul but I can say that there are many album cuts that I appreciate and other cuts I wish would have been "cut" from the tracklist. In my opinion, True to Self was too long and did not flow as seamlessly and cohesive as TrapSoul, which made me wonder who A&R'ed this project. Having many songs on albums and projects is a new practice by labels to increase streams by taking a “playlist” approach, but at the same time it’s annoying and tends to dilute the quality of albums – The album intro sets the tone for the album. Tiller sampled SWV’s “Rain" for "Rain On Me". What makes me love Tiller's music so much is his consistent use of Trap instruments. He has truly made a mark with Trap music and the trap music in his songs always shine through. The introduction track has a smooth trap beat with Tiller telling his girl to cry on him – I fucked heavy with "No Longer Friends" I've been in this situation so many times, I felt like Tiller was singing my life. I honestly used to listen to this song every day before work. We all been in that scenario where your significant other gets jealous of your close "guy" or "girl" friend. The plot twist is you actually have deep feelings for them whether romantically involved or not. I believe Tiller champions on touching on relationship topics that resonate well in his music. "Don't Get Too High" was another dope cut but it felt less exciting as "No Longer Friends" which was more heartfelt. "Don't Get Too High" shows the more empathetic side of Tiller, caring for his girl's wellbeing telling her not to overdo it with the "drugs". The sentiment was nice but I felt this song was type boring – “Blowing Smoke” shows the more rowdier side of Tiller. I love when he talks his "Young Pen Griffey" shit. It reminds me of his "Rambo" days. Tiller treads lightly on the line between a rapper and a soul-singer with his hard-hitting bars and lusty harmonies. “Blowing Smoke” has a dope hook but again, this song is sonically boring when compared to all the sonically pleasing songs on TrapSoul. Tiller did allude to having problems with his old manager, I wonder if this song was a shot to that manager. Tiller was really talking that talk on this track.

Written by @jxxiii from Crown All Queens




Album Info

"True to Self"


  • Jun 23, 2017


  • R&B


  • RCA


  • Allen Ritter
  • Ayo
  • Boi-1da
  • FrancisGotHeat
  • Frank Dukes
  • Gravez
  • Illmind
  • Hollywood Hot Sauce
  • J-Louis
  • Keyz
  • Mahxie
  • NES
  • Xeryus G
  • Pro Logic
  • Soundz
  • Trvp Vee
  • Skyz Muzik
  • Swiff D
  • Teddy Walton
  • T-Minus
  • WondaGurl
  • Wow Jones


True to Self is the second studio album by American singer Bryson Tiller. It was released on May 26, 2017, by RCA Records. Recording sessions took place from 2016 to 2017, while the production was handled by several producers from Teddy Walton, NES, Boi-1da, Frank Dukes, Illmind, Hollywood Hot Sauce, Keyz, Soundz, T-Minus and Wondagurl, among others.
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