Ending a trilogy is never easy. Especially when the first two installments come equipped with such distinctive legacies. When Migos launched their Culture saga with the debut chapter in 2017, the Atlanta trio earned instant acclaim. Songs like “Bad And Boujee” became modern classics; Donald Glover famously equated the group to “The Beatles Of This Generation.” The influence their style appeared to have on the game at large, from the triplet-flow down to the fashion, was undeniable.

Takeoff Offset Quavo Migos

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In 2018, the landscape had shifted. Some had grown to resent Migos, deeming them to be the catalysts for some of the game’s more prevalent musical trends. Even though they hadn’t dropped new music for nearly a year, the sheer numbers of Migos clones saturating the game in their absence made it feel like they had. As a result, their favor upon dropping Culture II had dipped, though certainly not entirely. Tracks like “MotorSport,” “Narcos,” and “Walk It Talk It” proved the group still held the hitmaking elixir, though the bright spots were dulled amidst the album’s bloat. At twenty-four tracks, many felt that the Migos were more concerned with short-term gain than creating a lasting body of work.

It didn’t help that the rest of the year found Migos hellbent on flooding the market, with both Quavo and Takeoff firing off their respective solo albums Quavo Huncho and The Last Rocket in rapid succession. Though Offset wisely opted to push his own back to January of 2019, the damage appeared to be done. The game had grown fatigued of the Migos sound, having had no shortage of material to unpack in such a short period. Though the trio had originally intended to release Culture III in 2019, they eventually made the decision to delay it to 2020.

Now, the damnable year of 2020 is winding to a close and Migos’ upcoming album is nowhere in sight. While it’s unclear as to when the project will actually drop, we do know a little bit about what can be expected whenever they do decide to return for another go-around.

NAME CHANGE

While we’ve been bracing ourselves for a conclusion to the Culture series, the group actually revealed that they planned on changing the name entirely. During an interview with Lil Wayne on the Young Money Radio series, Migos shared a bit of insight into their future plans. “We ain’t dropped in about two years,” says Offset. “We’re just warming up,” teases Quavo, confirming that the YoungBoy-assisted “Need It” will be on the album. “We gon’ change the name. We gon’ push Culture III, the title, back. We changing the name this time.”

MIXTAPE ROOTS

While it’s impossible to speak for the collective, it does feel as if Migos understands the baggage that has come to be associated with the Culture saga. It would explain why they opted to change the album’s name, suggesting a shift in their own creative direction. In April of 2020, Quavo seemed to change gears entirely, vowing a return to the crew’s formative years with a new mixtape. “Quarantine Mixtape?? Jus To Keep Y’all Straight," offered Quavo, via Instagram. “Then Culture III. When All This Is Over! Y’all Fuck Wit That? Cuz We Ready To Drop. ASAP. Original Migo Mixtape!!! Day 1 Shit."

Unfortunately, that plan appears to have changed once again, given that months have passed without a sign of any Migos mixtape. It is, however, possible that the group enjoyed their “mixtape” direction so much that they opted to build an album around it, which might explain their decision to delay Culture III and ready a completely different title. In other words, while a pre-album mixtape may no longer be in the cards, perhaps some of the recorded material will form the basis of their forthcoming project.

Migos Quavo Takeoff Offset

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POSSIBLE SINGLES

During what we believed to be the Culture III rollout, the Migos did deliver a few tracks seemingly intended for the now-untitled project. The Travis Scott and Young Thug-assisted “Give No Fxk,” was the first, though it didn’t exactly set a promising tone. In fact, many felt like Migos were merely chasing the bag, relying on the lineup’s popularity to run the numbers up. The concern only intensified upon the release of “Taco Tuesday,” released on Cinco de Mayo -- while the jovial tone and culinary lyrics were mildly amusing, it didn’t exactly instill much hope for the upcoming project.

Follow-up single "Racks 2 Skinny" fared admittedly better, boasting a darker tone and inspired performances from each member. While it’s unclear if it, or either of the aforementioned two, are slated to make the final tracklist, “Racks 2 Skinny” is easily the best of the bunch. Or at least it was, prior to the release of the YoungBoy Never Broke Again-assisted “Need It.” Fueled by a flipped reimagining of 50 Cent’s classic “Get In My Car,” Migos and YoungBoy trade back-and-forth bars on what may very well be their hardest track in actual years. At this time, it is the only track actually confirmed to have a spot on the album, as stated by Quavo during the Young Money Radio interview with Lil Wayne. A solid start, and one that seems to reinforce the theory that “mixtape” energy will be prevalent.

GUEST APPEARANCES

Migos have gained no shortage of respect from their hip-hop peers, to the point where they can likely call in a few favors whenever album time rolls around. With that in mind, the possibilities for collaboration are endless. We’ve already seen a few names tossed around, though keep in mind that much has changed in the interim -- as a result, the following is purely speculative.

In December of 2019, Offset teased a collaboration with Juice WRLD, revealing it was intended for the trilogy’s planned conclusion. “I got this song called ‘What’s Bracking’ with him and we gonna put that shit on Culture III,” he explained, though it’s uncertain whether the track still holds a spot. More recent studio footage sound Quavo cooking up in the lab with both Post Malone and Dr. Dre, though it’s unclear as to whether the new Migos album was the focus of those sessions. It’s certainly intriguing to fathom what a Migos and Dr. Dre collaboration might sound like, and we already know the havoc a Post Malone feature can wreak upon the charts.

At this moment, the lone feature confirmed to be on the upcoming album is YoungBoy Never Broke Again.