It’s taken a while for this one to drop. MONTANA was preceded by a flurry of singles which dropped throughout 2019, but by the time the release date rolled around for the album, French was sitting pretty in hospital after suffering symptoms of chronic exhaustion.
Now he’s on a strict month of bed rest and the album is out. The Morrocan-born rapper was largely carried to success on the momentum of a couple of lucky shot collaborations and when it comes to MONTANA he’s stuck to his guns in this regard. Only 5 of the 20 tracks are solo songs, the rest feature star-studded guest appearances by his famous friends Travis Scott, Cardi B, Swae Lee, Post Malone and a whole heap more. He even enlisted Drake on a couple of tracks.
French knows how to own the modern hip-hop environment. With the album clocking in at just over an hour he fast-tracks through classic hip-hop, trap influence, a little dip into almost R&B, right round into some homeland Muslim roots.
“Salam Alaykum” being one such track, but he came under fire with his album cover teaser – an image of him flanked by a line of women in thigh-high red boots and niqābs. Fans were equally unimpressed by the inclusion of 4-year-old track “Lockjaw” – but other than that this album is pretty smooth sailing – from the rousing anthemic “50’s & 100’s” (ft. Juicy J) to EDM influence flying high on “Wanna Be”.