Joey Badass’ career has been largely under-the-radar until his May 2016 release of the single “Devastated” topped charts nationwide. While his debut mixtape, “1999” gave promise to the Brooklyn rapper’s eventual career, it never gained serious public notoriety and topped out at a modest 38th on Complex’s best albums of 2012. 2013 came with Badass’ Beast Coast tour alongside Pro Era, the Underachievers, and Flatbush Zombies, along with the release of his second mixtape, “Summer Knights”. As fans began to question if the 17-year old phenom on “1999” had died out, his release of his studio album “B4.DA.$$” silenced their concerns. The 2014 project had a variety of notable tracks, and debuted at number 5 on the Billboard 200. But the year is now 2017, and the growing popularity and influence of Joey has left expectations for his second studio album sky high. A recent pair of Power 106 LA radio show appearances have displayed his outright intimidating freestyling ability, and an increased social conscious have led us to believe that this new project should be harder than ever. For an artist that has been duped for simply replicating a nostalgic east-coast sound, it is worth questioning whether Joey looks to diversify on this project and shock critics. As April 7th approaches, it is important to look back at Badass’ roots, so that his progression can be understood upon his project’s drop.