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Review: Win by Tee Grizzley

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Tee Grizzley’s moment has been going on strong for months now, and it looks as if there’s no sign of it slowing down. He released My Moment back in April to critical acclaim, following shortly after with the heavy-hitting “Teetroit” single for the Detroit movie that premiered this summer. He released “Beef” recently with Meek Mill, bringing the conversation about his sound to a boiling point. He’s been bearing his all lately on wax and he doesn’t need to. But as time has shown again and again, rappers who really love the craft continue to release music even when time doesn’t call for it.

Here is where Grizzley’s new release, “Win,” falls into place. He didn’t need to release it, but it’s as if he sensed a well-needed switch up in his musical repertoire. It’s here that Grizzley switches the formula again, but at the same time, keeps it similar enough to define his aesthetic. This piano-infused, bass-heavy lyric trip features Grizzley offering his signature style of inspiration, dedication, and reaffirmation of power to listeners. It’s a heart-warming track that seems a little off kilter from what you’d expect from a Tee Grizzley record.

Much of what makes the track work comes from legendary producer Helluva’s beat contribution. There’s a beautiful piano playing in the background, juxtaposed with the quickfire beat that makes for a startling, yet smooth combination. Over it, Grizzley just goes in repeatedly, not stopping. It’s sure to become a fan favorite, even more so than “First Day Out” which while similar, lacks the heart and drive shown on “Win.”

The test of time will show whether “Win” becomes Grizzley’s biggest record to date. The nicely put together beat and rap cadence delivered by Grizzley will be sure to win new fans and convince prior ones of his capabilities.

 

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@LanaLadonna’s ‘$B1glan’ is the perfect glimpse of her bold future

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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.

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.@MeechTheGoat’s ‘Before Chronicle’ is must-hear music

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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.

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Here’s The Verdict on Joey Purp’s ‘QUARTERTHING”

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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.

 

 

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