Future is one of the few artists to get another shot at making a first impression. The Atlanta native spent the past two years releasing a handful of mixtapes ahead of his debut album, "Pluto" (Epic/A1/Free Bandz), that arrived in April. The LP rode the buildup from buzzy street singles "Magic" and "Tony Montana," bowing at No. 8 on the Billboard 200 with 41,000 copies sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
But since "Pluto's" release, Future's star has shone brighter. His single "Turn On the Lights," the first from the LP that wasn't previously included on a mixtape, peaked at No. 2 on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, while his latest cut "Neva End" is No. 34 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay tally. Now, the 26-year-old is repackaging his debut as "Pluto 3D" (Nov. 27) with three new songs and two remixes, giving him a second chance at debut success.
"I look at 'Pluto' as Jay-Z's 'Reasonable Doubt.' Just timeless music. I'm an entertainer and more of a lifestyle with a movement. So movements take a little longer to catch on," Future says. For "Pluto 3D," Epic chairman/CEO Antonio "L.A." Reid personally resequenced the album, expressing interest in nurturing his creativity. "L.A. wanted to be more involved. He felt like he wanted to be a part of it and know what my ideas are. It's more of a team effort, and he did a great job."
From Epic's perspective, timing the rerelease to the year-end retail blitz was incentive to back the project. "This is a great time going into the holidays with Thanksgiving and Christmas," Epic executive VP of urban music Benny Pough says. "All the fans are going to be experiencing time with the family, getting gift cards and discovering Future."
The release of Pluto 3D also echoes a mixtape model of saturating the market with new product, which Future's manager Orlando McGhee says is a strong component in keeping his momentum sustained. "One thing we don't want to do is get off of people's radar," McGhee says. "The attention is paying off. But right now, the focus is keeping product in the marketplace, whether it's a mixtape or a commercial album."
Following Pluto 3D's release, Future will put out a double-disc mixtape, Super Future/Fire Marshall Future, and follow that with his sophomore LP, Future Hendrix, in the spring. He will also perform on "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" on the day of Pluto 3D's release.
"People are still catching on and some are still sleeping on it," Future says. "Every day is a new day for me, and that just goes to show that I make timeless music."••••