Artist: Corner Boy P
Album: Red Eye Mixtape
Song: Winners Never Lose
The first chords emulate the rise or descent in an elevator; it’s undetermined which at this point. The dim, imprecise and strangely welcoming beat envelopes like the feeling of waking up and discovering it’s Saturday, after indulging in an uninterrupted, lengthy night’s slumber. As this warm sound yawns on Corner Boy P’s gentle voice triggers, intricate verses drizzled in every nook and cranny of the beat. The lyrics ripe with both optimism and distrust. The confidence is infectious.
The elevator is rising.
Artist: Far East Movement
Download: I refuse to willingly spread this mixtape, thus will not provide the URL it can be found on datpiff.com if you want to be severely annoyed.
You know those pictures on Facebook and Instagram that are brimming with a false sense of pride? The ones that are meant to be a testament to how undeniably awesome the person’s recent happenings are. The pictures that often use #winning or #perfection but when looked deeper into you gain this odd sense of wretchedness and melancholy. You notice the 1 or 2 likes when the person was clearly anticipating at least 15-20. You see a guilt induced comment left by someone tagged in the photo. You notice that their dream vacation as they labeled #perfection is in fact a scum ridden Disney Cruise, or #perfection as a 5 for under 500 calories meal at Applebees. No filter can make that meal look good. That is what this new album reminds me of. It tries incredibly hard, but is just bad.
Far East Movement does its best Baauer impression on the first song, longing for that catchiness for that x factor that made the song viral but coming up miles short. The rest of the album is a busy blundering mess that gives me anxiety to listen to. If you like having anxiety I would certainly recommend downloading this.
Artist: Soopah Eype
Album: What’s Up Sweatpants
There’s a certain type of voice and flow that seems to disregard whatever beat it is placed on. Often times seemingly off rhythm, forcing words where they shouldn’t be, straddling the confines of the beat itself, testing its patience. It takes a real talent to navigate in this way, its exceedingly difficult, MF Doom is perhaps the largest pioneer of this style, and now Soopah Eype also comes to mind.
What’s Up Sweatpants is an outstanding mixtape, plenty of variety in samples and the complexity of rhyming schemes used keeps the listener deeply focused. There’s also a certain nostalgia invoked. I find myself wanting to play Double Dragon on SNES and spend my allowance on Star Wars figures and X-Men trading cards, and eat Warheads all day.
This mixtape demands play in any circumstance from relief to a banal commute to the blisses of an everlasting NBA 2K round robin, firmly cemented on your favorite over-stuffed.
Title: Corpse Pose
Artist: Celestial Trax
Album: INNER GODS, FALSE ICONS
Name your price download: http://celestialtrax.bandcamp.com/
This song has been haunting my dreams in the most magnificent of ways. It’s catchy and there isn’t a lyric. It seems like it could transform the most harmless idea or object into something apparational, uncanny and abnormal. It reminds me of this piercing noise my roomates outdated likely porn infested PC would make as it gasped and clawed at life. It was called the e-Machine and when turned on would unleash this painful noise, a groaning that sounded like a 3 year old verbalizing the letter E and holding it for 1 eternity.
This song will swallow you, it will embrace and eventually consume. It’s somehow pretty gangster even though there are no bars to be found. The whole album is great but I had to do a feature on this one song.
It’s my beliefe that this is what the man below was listening to when he peered into and forced his way into your soul in the video below:
Title: March 3, 2013
Artist: Lil Flip
Album: My Birthday 32
I hadn’t heard anything from Lil Flip in well over a decade, and given the sketchiness of the cover art and the title of the mixtape I was hesitant to believe it was an official release. It looks like something that would get spray painted onto a tall-t outside of Gadzooks in University Park Mall. It is in fact Flip though and though the album itself is generously mediocre, one song stands out.
The song March 3, 2013 is relentlessly Houston, it lives, breaths and embodies the throwback H-Town style that Chamillionaire and Paul Wall channeled in Get Ya Mind Correct. (back when both were damn solid rappers) A staunchly airy song, jovial and seemingly untouched by time, would have undoubtedly made it big in the late 90’s early 2000’s. This song is a breath of fresh air, utterly unfocused and disorderly, no real adherence to any brand or topic of rhyme. It demands shoulder shrugging and other drony, catatonic club dances. The completely inaudible chorus strangely beckons the listener into a hazy appeasement and bids you to reach for the nearest solo cup and promptly nourish yourself. I will be playing this relentlessly come spring/summer.
Artist: Deniro Farrar
Album: The Patriarch
Release: March 2013
I reviewed the BSBD and Deniro Farrar collaboration mixtape last week; coincidentally Farrar released “The Patriarch” this week.
The album gets three stars alone for the album art, a thoroughly disgruntled gold plated Darth Vader dressed in Pope Garments. His annoyance probably stems from reigning exclusively over the Catholic Church as opposed wreaking havoc on an entire universe. Also the fact that he is relegated to the pope mobile rather than his preferred kitted out TIE-fighter (with the frog eyes).
The 13 different producers create a jagged and fleeting feel to the album, the variability in both beats and rhymes eliminates any opportunity for staleness to set in. There are some beats that Vader himself probably trained the varying Sith Lords to (though likely General Grievous preferred to train in silence), while others sound like the bedroom dream pop movement that has been steadily gaining popularity. Even those songs have a certain murkiness to them however, they are shrouded, highly introverted and reflective. Again Farrar’s ability to meld remorse, with anger, with longing shines through and dissolves into the beats perfectly.
I would imagine something like this is the only thing that plays when Goku is training in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber, or perhaps the final bit of inspiration he needed before he ascended further than any Saiyan. I will take this over any heavy metal to work out to any day of the week. It is focused and poignant. Word to the weary, with diversity of producers on this album it is not the easiest to digest, but if you appreciate great production and a unique rapping talent you should absolutely cop this.
Album: Rich Gang All Stars
There are times when rapper Tyga seems like a complete dullard, barely able to wipe his own ass. A barely audible whistle is present as the wind and air pass into and through the depleted/devoid cavern that the brain would normally reside. There are other times however when he commands tracks with prodigious flow and swagger. He’s harder to predict than a snap dragon curve ball at the Slugger’s batting cages after 12-14 grape bombs. Will it be a cookie over the plate or some chin music to dust you off the plate and embarrass you in front of leering and snarling frat house that is Sluggers.
He seems to have a propensity to feast on the simplest of beats (see Rack City or Raw) it seems like its the only type of beat he can rap on, but so long as he keeps making songs like this I’m alright with it. There’s something endearing about the how straightforward the chorus is. In a world where everything is spring loaded and has double meanings, an enigma wrapped in a conundrum sometimes it’s nice to hear just that “All my shit dope,” simple, unmistakable and damn catchy.
Artist: Gucci Mane
Album: Trap God 2
Release: February 2013
Best Line: “Tote my pistol anywhere…go to war with a grizzly bear”
Must cop album for anyone who loves rap.
Gucci seems to have finally awakened from his hibernation, or he’s at least as awake as Gucci can be.The first Trap God mixtape was a torpid, lethargic swim through a bottle of Nyquil. It was equivalent to butt bonging sleepy time tea.
Gucci seems revitalized in Trap God 2 a true steadfast renaissance for Gucci mixtapes. The beats are expansive, all over the spectrum and succeed in keeping the delivery fresh and perhaps dually function to keep Gucci from falling asleep mid-verse. As for the rhymes/delivery most of them sound like Gucci was filling in the madlib portion of a highlights magazine with a dull number 2 pencil in a dentist office. Mush mouthed and stuffy nosed. Recorded perhaps on another planet.That is the embodiment of Gucci however, and the oddity/abnormality driving the rhymes and delivery is what has captivated us for so many years. And Gucci is absolutely turnt up on this album, he’s as focused and and vigilant as ever.
This can be plainly seen in the best track on the album “Bullet Wound” in which Gucci’s lyrics include but are not limited to: Going to war with packs of Grizzly Bears, diamonds like starbursts and doing combinations of zannies, lean and coke (in no particular order)
There are plenty of hilarious moments in the mixtape as well, including a song called Break Dance. You would assume is about people practicing the more traditional definition of street dancing. Instead this is apparently a unique celebratory dance that Gucci has created whilst breaking down bricks of cocaine.
My imagination is spinning on what this could entail I assume part of it is revving a fake motorcycle. I’ve always held a weird reverence for Gucci, just how uncanny the man actually is. Either way I will be eagerly anticipating the next edition of Trap God. Enjoy one more song from this beauty and then immediately download.
Artist: Gucci Mane
Album: Trap God
A stammering, muddled, mumbling and slumbering Gucci on an equally tranquil beat has success written all over it. The beat to this song is minimalist to say the least (a snare and an spectral piano are really the only audible sounds) and Gucci embraces and embodies that with his verses. I often wonder if Gucci recorded this song while napping, being stirred awake every so often to record a quick line. At times he seems barely audible, and other times it sounds as though he is forcing the sleep laden lyrics out with urgency-the soul purpose being nodding off into another Gucci slumber. (“I got a trap house mansion with some hard wood floors”) This must be what it feels like to take a whole bottle of Nyquil to the dome and then record a rap song. It all works beautifully.
When I listen to this I can’t help to think it was written, recorded and produced by the Pokemon below…known as Snorlax or more adoringly in Japan as Relaxo. He had to have his paws in some part of this song, even if it was mere inspiration. (Gucci and his pals were presumably playing Pokemon Snap, got to frustrated trying to get a Charizard shot and ended up settling for a solid Relaxo reel)
Artist: Yung Macnificent
Album: From Woods to Fame
Be prepared…this song is an unrelenting banger, as is most of the mixtape. (I would check out Das All and Live for the Moment and a plethora of others) The name of the song is no coincidence is huge hooks, huge rhymes and a literal and figurative colossal sample.
This is clearly the song that The Nerdlucks and their their nefarious boss, Mister Swackhammer listened to in the space craft from Moron Mountain to earth right before their legendary battle with the TuneSquad. It’s not groundbreaking, frankly it’s not even that creative but it’s brassy, bold and loud and that counts for something, sometimes there’s no need to over complicate things but rather destroy your ear drums with a good ole fashion banger.