Metro Boomin Is Headed to No. 1 (Again). Here’s a Guide to His Music.

Since 2013, Metro Boomin has crafted the beats behind more than 75 songs that reached Billboard’s Hot 100, including 12 Top 10 hits. The Atlanta-via-St. Louis producer has turned contemporary radio into a shadowy world of nocturnal 808 drums and sinister synths while providing breakout moments for Atlanta rappers including Future, Migos and 21 Savage.

Metro Boomin, now 30, emerged as a solo artist in 2017, but he has remained a vital collaborator. Two years later, he helped write “Heartless,” a No. 1 single for the Weeknd, and he oversaw the soundtrack for the 2023 sequel “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.” This year, he was up for producer of the year, non-classical, at the Grammys (and lost to Jack Antonoff). Next week, he’s poised to claim his fourth No. 1 album with “We Don’t Trust You,” his 17-track collaboration with the woozy tunesmith Future. (A second project by the pair is due April 12.) Here are some of the crucial moments on his path to becoming hip-hop’s premier sculptor of sonic storm clouds.

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Future featuring Lil Wayne, “Karate Chop (Remix)” (2013)

Released in the run-up to Future’s highly anticipated second album, “Honest,” “Karate Chop” features a kaleidoscopic mix of sparkling arpeggios and buzzing synths. Metro Boomin was not sold on the beat, which he had crafted before his move to Atlanta, but Future became infatuated with it. The song became the first charting single to bear the producer’s credit, released while the 19-year-old Metro was a freshman at Morehouse College. “I had no clue from all the records we’ve done,” he told XXL, that this “would be the one. But these days, the people and the streets produce the singles.”

ILoveMakonnen featuring Drake, “Tuesday” (2014)

Produced with Sonny Digital and ILoveMakonnen, the breezy, peculiar “Tuesday” became Metro Boomin’s first Top 20 pop hit. Spacious, ethereal and recorded at Metro Boomin’s house, the track’s disorienting, calliope-style melody and barely there drums leave an open gulf for ILoveMakonnen’s singsong vocal to shine. “Every song with him is like one take,” Metro Boomin said of Makonnen in The Fader. “Even if he messes up at a little part, he’ll leave it, so it’s organic and raw. That’s why people love it. It’s breaking the rules.”

From left, Future, Travis Scott, and Metro Boomin attending A Night With Future DS2 in 2015 in New York City.Credit…Johnny Nunez/WireImage, via Getty Images

Future featuring Drake, “Where Ya At” (2015)

Future’s first three Top 40 hits — “Where Ya At,” the Drake collaboration “Jumpman,” and “Low Life” — all came courtesy of Metro Boomin. The first, an ice-cold trap pounder that sounds like the tortured strings of a prepared piano, provided a blueprint for the two-times-platinum “What a Time to Be Alive,” the full-length collaboration from Future and Drake, where Metro Boomin served as executive producer.

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