Talked about the some of the records I keep in rotation these days, including a new steppers’ classic, a forgotten “for the ladies” record from the mid 90s, my favorite 2014 Nigerian jam, and new Chief Keef.
King Louie’s Tony is a force of nature and one of the strongest projects of his career. The Chicago street rapper marshals the bleak language and imagery of violence to craft a world where brutal realism and mythos collide, where reality bleeds indiscriminately into art, and the extreme is everyday.
Texas rapper BeatKing’s Gangsta Stripper Music 2 is in-your-face, crude, lowbrow rap music. He is, in essence, a Houston punchline rapper making crunk records, but he’s one of the biggest rappers in Texas right now because the sum is so much more than those parts.
Great tape by BeatKing, a good time, put the kids to bed before you listen. then soundproof their rooms.
I keep hearing rap fans out bemoaning the death of lyricism in modern hip-hop and pine for the death of trap, and I keep telling them there’s guys out there fighting the good fight, but no one listens. Kevin Gates is one of the best songwriters working in the genre right now, but cats who aren’t familiar play him off like he’s Just Another Drug Dealer Airhead. On Twitter today I said you could probably cobble together a mix of songs off the last 3 Gates tapes that would blow half the last 2 years of mainstream rap albums outta the water. Here it is.
If you’re one of those types who can’t figure out why the rest of us have been gassing Gates’ music for the last year, I want you to listen to this shit. And I don’t mean scan for flows without considering what the words mean or skim through trying to Locate The Single like we’re schmaltzing over business cards and open bars at somebody’s “listening event” (although if you were to do the latter, you’d probably hear four or five). Dude is a monster, and I need rap fans supposedly committed to championing talented lyricists to wake the fuck up. Gates is on that XXL Freshmen cover for a reason. Thanks.
What Craig says is true. He’s one of the genre’s most talented artists, and writes smart, crafted rap songs. He’s been doing it. And to bogart Craig’s post, here’s something I wrote about his latest tape earlier this year.