Big Sean’s Double Or Nothing will be remembered as one of the most polarizing projects of 2017. People couldn’t tell if they loved it or hated it – questionable lyric choices and the raging question of whether Sean and Boomin (who produced the project) had comparable styles made for some funny social media jokes. But the question that lingers in the mind at the end of the day is how does he ultimately fare? Does Sean do Metro’s dark production justice? For the rest of the album, there are mixed results. But on Double Or Nothing‘s fifth track “So Good,” Sean invites Kash Doll to the proceedings and the two create one of the most intense, sexually-charged rap songs in recent history.
Metro Boomin provides a hurricane of production, something that seems to only move faster as it goes. It’s been stripped down and saddled with the Bay Area’s mainstays – quick snaps, shouts of “Aye,” and trunk-rattling bass. As much as Big Sean and Kash Doll do and say on this track, Boomin’s production is the silent, yet loud, character that trades verses with the others.
And verses, that’s another beast entirely. Sean’s quips here are legendary, aimed at a woman whose very talented in the bedroom. On the song’s explicit chorus, Kash Doll’s sensual voice can be heard adding ad-libs and her own sense of sexual freedom into the mix. When she comes in for her verse, it’s more on-the-head and vulgar – in a good way – than what you’ll hear from Cardi B. or Nicki Minaj. She immediately makes it clear that she’s freaky and her verse backs it up (no pun intended).
What really makes the song work, outside of the witty wordplay provided by the two Detroit mainstays, is the chemistry between the two artists. They both offer a quiet, withdrawn delivery that belies their usual energetic method of rapping. This allows them to ride the beat in ways that help to transcend it’s pumping bass akin to a bull rider mastering the throttling beast. Their energy also plays off each other’s similar styles, egging each on to get even crazier, and raunchier. Their combined efforts have enabled them to slide in, right as 2017 ends, and release one of the best songs of the year.
When “So Good” reaches its conclusion, the impact that it’s made on your ears is a positive one. You’ll be tempted to listen to it again – just not where people can hear that you’re listening to it because boy, is it explicit. But it’s different, organic, and sexy; three adjectives that can be used to describe Kash Doll herself. The sexual tension she brings to the track elevates it from a good one to a great one. This will be the song that pushes her from the top of Detroit rap prominence to the world’s playing field.
Listen to the erotic symphony below:
@LanaLadonna’s ‘$B1glan’ is the perfect glimpse of her bold future
There’s something of a renaissance in women’s rap. Acts like Cardi B, the City Girls, and Rico Nasty have made bold steps in reclaiming a certain vigor that past acts of the 90s made into a genre-leading niche. It’s amazing to see because we’re getting to a point where women in rap are as vast and varied as ever before and, every day, we see more exciting acts come to light.
The latest is Lana LaDonna, a Detroit-based lyricist whose bold and empowering bars remind you a bit of Cardi B, but crossed with the flair of Rico Nasty. Her latest project is $B1GLAN, a quick and dirty helping of her tremendous personality. Over quick and bombastic production, she dazzles with flurries of bars that get you familiar with who she is. And once she does, you’ll love her for it.
She has multiple voices on display, just listen to “Ykwtfgo” where she angrily prances on the beat while rapping on it. And that’s just the beginning. From there, she grows more excited. Tracks like “I’on Gaf” are spectacular party bangers where her eager screed makes you want to stop what you’re doing and turn up. And then on slightly sinister cuts like “Kill Me” she threatens with a twinkler in her eye. She varies her styles and constantly keeps you engaged.
There’s a lot to love about $B1glan, with the only seeable criticism being that it’s too short. As soon as the energy kicks up to high gear, it’s over in a flash, leaving you to wonder how the rest of this marvelous, high octane night went. That doubles as a strength though, powered by the project’s consistency that keeps you excited. So, I guess in the end, maybe that’s also a strength.
$B1glan is everything that you could want out of a project and more. Lana LaDonna creates her own style that contains bits of others, molded into something that’s every bit as energetic, braggadocious, and inspiring as her peers — but also boldly original. Her rhymes are going to be inspiring the world someday soon. For now, $B1glan‘s going to have to do.
Listen to $B1glan below.
.@MeechTheGoat’s ‘Before Chronicle’ is must-hear music
There aren’t too many celebrities out of Kansas City, save for Ellie Kemper of The Office fandom. There definitely aren’t any rappers. TXYLOR is looking to change that though and his new release, Before Chronicle, shows that he definitely has the chance. With vast and varied production, the rising rapper shows that with a little tempering, he’ll take over before you know it.
TXYLOR comes from the school of conscious, authentic raps that artists like J. Cole and Kendrick Lamar have cultivated over the course of their careers. Songs like “24 Trillion Miles” paint a picture of the path he’s taken, with great care to contextualize his pain and struggles through hefty bars that deliver a punch. Another track like “Move Around” is more sinister and bleak so his delivery reflects this, with emotional bars that ask for space. Its anxious mood is drastically different from the first. You pick up on the diversity and are sucked in. This is someone who understands poise and the importance of presence.
But everything isn’t a tale of the two extremes. TXYLOR’s strengths come from how he can make relatable raps in all forms. “Go” is a trap-adjacent jam that talks about the authenticity of the people around him. He keeps it real as he lists off the different kinds of fake. He gets introspective on “No Cure For A Cold Heart” when he talks to the people in his life – both here and departed – as he lets them know how it is. By covering multiple bases like this, his versatility becomes the star of the project and leaves him ringing in your ears way after it cuts off.
Before Chronicle is supposedly a preview before he releases an album called Chronicle. With this kind of wide-ranging effort on just a preview, we can imagine what’s going to be on the first. It makes you want to figure out more about this mysterious artist and see what he has going on. Before Chronicle is definitely what you need to learn more about TXYLOR.
Stream Before Chronicle up above.
Here’s The Verdict on Joey Purp’s ‘QUARTERTHING”
Joey Purp’s a member of the SaveMoney crew – a Chicago based collective featuring the likes of Chance The Rapper and Vic Mensa amongst other eclectic musicians – and brings a striking new element to Chicago’s music scene. When he released iiiDrops in 2016, although his sophomore project, the world was given a proper introduction into his world of street adjacent raps. He showed his ability to be introspective over a wide selection and variety of ethereal beats. His new project QUARTERTHING continues this creative selectiveness with a newfound commitment to innovation.
Over the course of its runtime, the unique cadence and flow he utilizes to channel excitement constantly grows and evolves. On tracks like “Elastic” and “Godbody Pt. 2,” Purp’s tenacity shines through the refracted lens of eclectic beat selection. Confidence is the main currency being traded on QUARTERTHING. “2012,” the album’s most nostalgic cut, even retains some of this aesthetic that helps to build immersion.
Although much of it the project is powerful, there’s a glaring misstep. “Bag Talk” has a yelling problem; one that the album tries its best to mask throughout with loud beats. But “Bag Talk” peels the veil back to showcase just how empty it sounds without the extra bells and whistles.
Nevertheless, QUARTERTHING is a powerful project that continues to showcase some serious growth for Purp. He’s proving himself to not only be one of SaveMoney’s best, but Chicago’s as well.