Spending a day with all three Migos is not unlike listening to one of the group’s trap anthems. Energy runs high. Spirits run even higher. Then, as soon as you can say, “Skrrtt, skrrtt, skrrtt,” things can completely change direction.

By hour eight of our photo shoot, the group has yet to appear in front of the camera. Quavo was the first to arrive, with done hair and a new puppy named Glacier. Offset rocked up a couple hours later with as much clothing and accessories in tow as the stylist. The group’s youngest member, Takeoff, is the last to arrive, instantly taking umbrage at the prospect of color-coordinating with his bandmates’ Louis Vuitton get-ups. He eventually opts for an electric-pastel Prada windbreaker. “When I go on the beat, I like to throw different colors on there,” he later tells me. “If you go right, I gotta go left and make a U-turn.”

When mankind first met the Migos in 2013, we were introduced to a chaotic triplet flow that has been doing donuts in the world’s subconscious ever since. The group’s breakout hit “Versace” is a four-minute banger in which the brand’s name is uttered 162 times, careening recklessly from hypnotic chants to staccato bursts akin to jazz vocals. From day one, the Migos’ contribution to music was to elevate the rap ad lib into being a thing in and of itself — with every pow, yuuuh, splash, ehhh, rrrrah, and blaghh sending a lightning bolt directly into the listener’s cerebellum.

“New sounds. New cadences. New hits. New bangers,” Quavo says, sounding almost like one of his verses as he describes the group’s upcoming album Culture III. In the years since they started their trilogy of studio LPs, the Migos have nonchalantly blazed through experiences that would normally capsize most groups: side projects, star spouses, rumors of in-fighting, solo albums, and car accidents. Yet, when the band finally makes it in front of the camera, immediately clicking into formation, it becomes clear how they’ve managed to swim above the fray. Their ability to push, pull, and build upon one another is powerful in a way that is difficult to describe. Not friends. Not business partners. Not brothers. Just Migos.

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