New Rap Music
Tuck fumblr. I’m back.
Killer Mike – “Burn“
from PL3DGE (Grand Hustle, Coming Soon)
Killer Mike is rapping over Funkadelic. Not Mothership Slap Bass Funkadelic, but painful psychedelic rock era Funkadelic. So it’s getting posted. This is one of those Mike tracks where he beats you over the head with his politics. He is great at that, he wields a fucking mallet and it hurts everyone it’s supposed to hurt and heals the rest of us but sometimes I wonder if a subtler approach might be more effective. Spoonfuls of sugar and all that. Wait. No. Fuck that.
Rittz f/ Yelawolf & Big Krit – “Fulla Shit“
from White Jesus (Mixtape, Coming Soon)
Rittz’ is an undeniably impressive rapper but his purpose and by extension his existence is perplexing. How is it possibly in Yela’s best interests to put on another (white, yeah that matters) rapper who raps just like him before he himself has really established much of a foothold or a following yet? It’d be pretty difficult for the uninitiated to tell the both of them apart on this song. Of course none of that means that the track doesn’t jam because it does. Krit in particular steps up well in the presence of more technically ambitious rappers. He and Yela have plans to release a collaborative mixtape, Trunk Muzik Wuz Here and that seems like it’ll be a very comfortable fit.
Fiend – “Absolutely“
from Tennis Shoes & Tuxedos (Mixtape, 2011)
So former No Limit soldier Fiend (aka International Jones though I refuse to call him that) is having an unexpected second (third?) act in his career thanks to a Curren$y affiliation. His current successes shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone because Fiend was an excellent rapper when he was on No Limit and then he was still pretty great when he got off The Tank, but it obviously is because some people like having a tidy narrative to their hip hop stories and No Limit having good rappers isn’t part of that narrative. (Case in point: “Makes me wish Fiend had done something like this when he was more relevant back in the late 90s.” The internet is infuriating…) Anyway, he’s back and in Jets form so Tennis Shoes & Tuxedos predictably leans to the mellow slow burner side of his persona, which is a good look for an aging gentleman of his disposition. It would be nice to hear him say WHOMP WHOMP once in a while, but spitting about how expensive his weed is over the borderline-Based ethereal vocal chops of “Absolutely” will definitely do.
G-Side f/ SLASH – “Came Up“
from Countdown To The 100 Day Theory (Mixtape, 2011)
2010 was a weirdly bumpy year for Huntsville with major label signees like 6 Tre G and Jackie Chain failing to capitalize on past successes while (lesser) known (lesser) talents flooded the market with more music than anybody but Brandon Soderberg could possibly parse and process but the city started this year off strong with some truly mind numbing offerings. Burn One deserves a trophy for “Heavily.” Block Beataz deserve like seven for The One. I can’t write much else about the G-Side because a full review is going elsewhere. You should really buy the album today though if you care about anything.
Mysonne – “In Jail“
Lightweight 50 Cent impersonator raps about prison life over a heavyweight beat.
Jet Age Of Tomorrow f/ Kilo Kish – “Want You Still“
from Journey To The Fifth Echelon (Odd Future, 2010)
Jet Age’s new album hasn’t gotten but a fraction of the attention that other recent Odd Future projects have. Maybe this is because it dropped on Christmas Day or becuase it’s less a rap oriented than their other projects, more of the N.E.R.D. disposition. It does feature a handful of close to traditional rap tracks. “Want You Still” adds another angle to Odd Future’s partially unintentional retro vibe, this time to the days of female rappers as neither sex kittens or tom boys but just as the loosely cute counterpoint to all the dudes shouting in the room. Kilo Kish is not necessarily an outstanding rapper but she fills space well and seems happy to be there, reminding me of a less refined Shorty No Mas or a less adventurous member of Figures Of Speech.” The subject matter (“I’m staring at the sun I hope my eyes fall out!”) places it firmly in the later category as well and the lightweight noodly production vibe also helps to push her towards that West Coast weirdo sphere. Tack this onto a grimey dub of Log Cabin or Radioinactive tracks and put it in a shoebox and nobody would be the wiser. Kilo also has a more modern near song on Youtube entitled “Where Da Cash At” which is sadly just a beat and a hook but deserves to be more than that. She runs with a crew called KKK (Kool Kats Klub). That’s another inadvertent throwbackism of Odd Future – you can trace the breadcrumbs from their cameos and side crews and Twitter friends to discover other similarly aligned artists in much the way we’d make mental notes of the names in liner notes thank yous back in the day.
Dusty McFly – “Twerkin“
from Buffies & Benihanas (Mixtape, Coming Soon)
Fun little record from a Detroit kid who can rap pretty well. He runs with Big Sean but this is far more engaging and entertaining than anything I’ve heard from that dude. Also he doesn’t rap like Drake. Or Drake doesn’t rap like him. In a perfect world this would be getting the attention that “Mixxie” did. Maybe Dusty should consider pouring out a little liquor on his momma’s carpet next time?
Gunplay – “On My Lap“
from Inglorious Bastards (Mixtape, 2010)
While we were gone Rick Rozay’s coke snorting and inexplicably Nazi obsessed weed carrier dropped a tape that’s been getting a decent amount of attention. Like album-oriented Ross does to American Gangster era Jigga, Gun (Play?) emulates the Waka/Luger sound to a T, maybe even perfects it on an empirical level. He’s definitely a more considerate writer than his primary influence but, like Ross, some of the energy and passion is lost in translation. Inglorious Bastards is a perfectly polished tribute to the Brick Squad but with none of the rough edges. One interesting thing though: where Ross has all but abandoned the early style of his city in favor of playing Jay-Z in a Eddie Murphy fat suit, Gunplay still occasionally (and seemingly by accident) slips and falls into an old Miami cadence. The “who the fuck say he wanted to rob?!” back and forth here, for example, definitely calls back to early slack tongue of Trick Daddy or even the shout-bass structure of Disco Rick.